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Synth Album Review: "Demiurge" by Chaos Vector

Karl is a longtime freelancer who's passionate about music, art, and writing.

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Overall Impressions

Chaos Vector’s Demiurge is a fulminating musical assault that overflows with terrible shadows and all of the unspeakable things that lurk within them. This album is massive, unrelenting and drenched in a miasma of fear. Chaos Vector takes his listeners into the darkness with him and forces them to confront the yawning abyss for themselves.

The most compelling reason I am drawn to Demiurge is the intensity of its musical atmosphere. Chaos Vector weaves together all of the album’s sounds to produce phantasmagorical, heavily shadowed and utterly terrifying mental imagery. There’s a mixture of ferocious rage, seething blackness and ghostly wandering that creates powerful images and emotional states.

Another factor that attracts me to Demiurge is the way that Chaos Vector approaches contrasting musical feelings on I. He seems to enjoy mixing heavy, unrelenting beats and dense bass walls with spectral miasmas and fragile piano notes to create a sense of haunting fear. The overall result serves to heighten both aspects of the sound and further intensifies the horror which the album generates.

I also enjoy the uncompromising approach that Chaos Vector took on the album. He didn’t hold back in expressing Stygian blackness, auditory assault and spectral dread in all of its glory. The album consistently maintains those qualities and gives the listener a chance to bathe in them fully. As a result, the music takes one on a journey through a jagged, demonic landscape that grips the soul with mortal terror.

My Favourite Tracks Analyzed

“Eosphoros”comes into being as vast, echoing space is filled by high sweeping sounds and low broad spectrum bass. Tapping, percussive sounds and an eerie vocal noise float while the ticking drum becomes more constant and nervous, elevated sounds form a rapidly undulating pulse.

Eerie, high synth spins into tense arpeggios that exude pure terror as they cry out along with the haunted choir sound floating into the void. The rapid, horrified arpeggios tangle and writhe and the huge drums slam. Chaos Vector effectively creates a feeling of worry spilling over into massive anxiety in this track.

After a sonic burst, digital-sounding synth notes tumble down through “Exogenesis” in a urgent rush as hard drums hit powerfully. Swelling synth flares erupt while grating sounds slice in and harsh bass growls underneath. Digital sounds rapidly ramble over the slamming beat and metallic synth coils. Broken, elevated synth shifts in a shadowy line over the unrelenting drum and bass grit.

Full, bell-like sounds ring out and the drumbeat throbs hard while high sound whirls. This track compels me with its musical evocation of chaos. Stuttering, aggressive bass drives the music forward and the digital synth keeps falling through the music in a jumble. Harsh sound bursts while the computerized synth forms a descending, roaming pattern and bells ring and fade. All the musical elements seethe and run together in continually whirling notes before abruptly ending.

“Crucible” opens as cavernous sonic space is filled of gruff bass as distant, cold chimes repeat a slowly drifting pattern and heaving bass weight surges. The chimes repeat hypnotically while an elevated, organ-like sound howls in fear. The percussion is hollow over Stygian depths as delicate piano floats and again the chimes repeat their phantasmic pattern.

After a guttural surge, chimes drift in a fragile, minor key line before a piano carrying a quick, shadowy pattern moves in. The gigantic drums and ferocious bass keep up a broken drive as medium-low, rough-edged synth slices through them. The lead synth’s aggressive, uneven surge contributes a palpable sense of demonic power to draw me in. Trumpeting higher notes come in and coldly spectral chimes keep up their distant shine.

A steady, medium-low drone carries on over the razor-edged bass surge and hollow percussion. The chimes are trance-inducing as they slowly flicker and nervous synth undulates. Dark piano notes entwine and all the sonic elements exude menace. The track ends in a heaving, throbbing bass attack while high synths wriggle above it.

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After a brief metallic clang, a choir of the damned howls out in pain while metal bangs and a steady wide bass sound repeats to launch “Demiurge.” String-like, tense synths churn and stop, adding an unsettled quality to the track. The choir cries out and heavy industrial noises bang as broad, bright synths repeat a slow pattern.

I enjoy the way that ethereal sounds roam in misty tendrils while the relentless beat judders. There’s a continually evolving, digital sounding rush over the attacking bass. Minor key notes float in a intertwined pattern and the choir howls as the snarling bass pushes on. A digital sounding synth rush explodes and there’s a break to terrified arpeggios twisting in on themselves.

Massive, brassy synth sounds mingle with the frightened choir like a hellish orchestra as the pulsating drumbeat jounces. Ghostly synth blows across the dark soundscape in filmy wisps. Broad, string-like synths are tinged with tragedy and the choir is full of agitation as a nervous arpeggio whirls. The powerful dread of the demonic brass blares out into the darkness just below it and all falls silent.

“Hunting Season” commences with an intense, pulsating line of aggressive synth moving in bursts over the heavy bass underneath it. A tight, worried synth line moves over the slamming drums and unrelenting bass attack. The rising synth has a haunted feeling as it swirls over the surging energy below it and the drums ram in. A hard-edged sound cuts in before the track flows into a diaphanous segment that pleasingly evokes a phantasm drifting past.

Heavy synth elements drill into the music as the drums smack in and the endless, lacerating bass pulse continues. Cascading synth with an orchestral feel rapidly tumbles over ghostly panpipes as the unremitting bass and drum throb continues. The medium-high synth wanders in a melodic pattern shrouded in shadow. Gritty, angular drums and bass drive the music onward with irresistible force before the strings and a descending synth flicker and fade.

The muscled heave of broad, slowly rolling bass is slashed by rough-edged synths swelling in to start “Arkhon.” Gigantic bass weight slams hard while creaking, medium-low synth repeats a hypnotic pattern. The background is full of screaming, queasy synth as a taut synth carries slowly revolving arpeggios.

Angular synth tears a jagged gash below higher sounds as a digital pattern of notes oscillates. I enjoy how this track is dominated by the harsh growl and guttural energy of the pulsating drums and bass. Fearful synths in the background keen over the sheer grit of the drums and bass before the track ends.

“Abraxas” starts off as a steady, rough-edged synth drone moves below gothic piano, carrying a portentous melody. The drumbeat and bass charge heavily below medium-low, dense synth wandering in a horrified line. Rapidly wriggling harpsichord trembles as the feelings of a lurking horror waiting in shadow grow stronger.

The main melody dances in a line that skillfully mingles horror with a sense of growing tension. Pulsating drums add another whole layer of crushing power and the piano flourishes while dark brass thunders out and the wheeling, whirling piano adds an intricate feeling of disorientation and flurrying flight over the weight that dominates the lower part of the song, deep and sinister.

Demonic bells ring and distant voices whisper into a croaking mire as “Sermons to the Dead.” The piano moves in spectral patterns that heighten the building threat as the strings tremble and another battering beat with deep power hits below the chanting of a demonic cult.

The piano turns in anxiety laden arpeggios a while the strings resonance and dark brass rises. Sparkling, writhing piano ripples out and the massive string section deepens the shadows. I am enamoured of the way in which high, metallic sounds ramp up the sense of unprecedented deadliness and the ancient chants create a sonic hellscape.

Conclusion

Demiurge is one of those albums that effectively draws listeners into its world. The sheer ability that Chaos Vector demonstrates to paint intense, deep auditory imagery makes the album strongly engaging. I am curious to hear more of his work in future.

© 2022 Karl Magi

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