Darksynth Album: "The Antipope Resurrection" by Dark Smoke Signal

Updated on April 20, 2020
KPM2017 profile image

Karl has been a freelance writer for over 10 years. He's passionate about music, art, and writing!

Album cover art for "The Antipope Resurrection," by Dark Smoke Signal
Album cover art for "The Antipope Resurrection," by Dark Smoke Signal

When it comes to dark, twisted and heavy synth sounds, Dark Smoke Signal has outdone himself on The Antipope Resurrection. This is an album that has a gut punch to it, and the shadows it casts are darker than the dark itself. There is an abundance surging bass, pulsing drums and rough-edged, cutting synth throughout the album. Surprisingly, there are also moments of warmth, as gentler, more flowing synths contrast the weight and aggression of the other elements on the album. However, make no mistake, this is darksynth at its most in your face and aggressive.

"The Antipope Resurrection" Album Review

The first element that makes The Antipope Resurrection work is the sound design that creates an open space in which all of the different parts of the music can sit. There is a strong feeling of cavernous voids that open around the weight of the drums and bass, the bite of the synths and sometimes the snarl of electric guitars and allow them to have an undeniable impact.

The hard-hitting drum sounds on this album are another strong element that gives all the other parts of the music more support. The heavy-duty thump and throb that they create adds both propulsion and darkness to the other musical building blocks of the album. They have a heartbeat and an aggression that works well with the feeling that The Antipope Resurrection creates. It is a feeling of violence and threat that permeates nearly every part of the musical landscape of the album.

Of course, the sensation of darkness on The Antipope Resurrection also gets a good boost from the crypt-like depth of the bass that moves like a dark creature under the surface of the music. There is something horrifying about the growling, grunting depths of the bass sounds that carry a sense of imminent threat, seething just underneath the rest of the music.

Another thing that I enjoyed about this album was the different and varied ways in which Dark Smoke Signal deployed the synths that he used. There is everything from hard-edged and grinding sounds to smooth airy flow and high chiming notes. Sometimes, in one track, we move from flowing warmth to harsh growling and back again. That breadth of different sounds helped The Antipope Resurrection to paint imagery that is both powerful and clear.

Now I’ll break down the tracks on The Antipope Resurrection that I found most compelling and discuss the elements within the music that made them work for me.

“Ad Infernum Crowley Diabolus” opens with a disturbing, bizarre chanting voice that’s full of distortion and a churning, twisting background of synth sounds. This is an extremely dark and twisted sounding track that has a hard driving beat that slams into it. There are moments of warmth in the lead synth melody as it climbs over the harsh, aggressive field of soudn underneath it. I also enjoyed the way the arps moved in cascading leaps over that thundering beat. This is a track with real power to it.

There’s an ominous feeling on “Fallen Idol” give by a slow but strong beat and hard pulses of bass. I enjoyed the contrast between those dark underpinnings and the higher synth sounds playing minor key melodies. There is also a rather interesting, more “technological” synth sound that adds a unique element. The vocoder vocals here are warm as they float through before the drums thunder and darkness returns.

“Chaotic Pendulum” has a rapidly driving propulsive beat that accelerates the track forward. The lead synth melody has a feeling of suspense to it and underneath electric guitar growls and surges as the track rushes onward. A rising synth melody soars over all the growl and throb under it. Everything in this track has power and the movement of the track does feel like a pendulum. I also enjoyed the howling, flying guitar solo that slices into the track and boosts the power further.

A vocal sample from J. Robert Oppenheimer opens “I am become Death, Destroyer of Worlds” with one of his most famous quotes related to the atom bomb. This only adds to the feeling of doom and portent created by repetitive synth patterns that roil in the background of this track. The relentless patterns move and move, spinning out through the track. However they are tempered by a lighter, brighter lead synth that adds contrasting warmth to the darkness and danger expressed by the grinding background of the track. This track is another example of the weight and power of this album.

“End Credits (A New Hope)” kicks off with a pretty classic synthwave feeling through those driving drums. This track is infused with a more hopeful feeling than most of the album as befits the title. There is something rising and warm here especially when those beautiful, soothing arps spin out into the track. The main melody played on a high synth really sings over the bass and drums, calling out through the fading darkness into the dawn. There was such a flowing, smooth feeling to this track.This does really feel like the end credit track to a movie as everything reaches a positive crescendo.

The Antipope Resurrection is a hard-hitting slab of synth music. However, it’s more complex than just that. There are moments of light in the darkness and the overall effect of the album is quite rich and layered. The balance of all the different musical ingredients allowed Dark Smoke Signal to move through a jagged, twisted landscape that sank to great depths but also soared above those depths. Not everyone might appreciate it, but The Antipope Resurrection certainly has power and strong imagery to impart to the listen


    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    No comments yet.


    This website uses cookies

    As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, spinditty.com uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

    For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at: https://maven.io/company/pages/privacy

    Show Details
    HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
    LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
    Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
    AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
    Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
    CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the googleapis.com or gstatic.com domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
    Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
    Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
    Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
    Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
    ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)
    ClickscoThis is a data management platform studying reader behavior (Privacy Policy)