Gamardah Fungus is a trio from Ukraine that has been travelling an experimental road since 2009. With a refreshing blend of ambient soundscapes, drones and dark jazz, they never disappoint, on the contrary. From the first tones of 'Internal Alchemy' I'm sold. This song, driving on dreamy guitars and far away soundscapes, is inspired by Neidan, an array of esoteric doctrines and physical, mental, and spiritual practices that Taoists initiate to prolong life. This background in meditation and Taoism gives the song a mysterious atmosphere, something that will remain throughout the album.
'Utopia', named after the book by Thomas More (released in 1516), is as unreachable and beautiful as the title predicts. Faint guitars and a hazy sax breathe an eerie, cold atmosphere in perfect dark jazz tradition. I find myself amazed and almost moved to tears with its beauty and that doesn't often happen. Maybe you don't know it yet, but I'm a huge Bohren and Dale Cooper fan and this stuff comes very, very close.
'Also Sprach Zarathustra', after the famous work by Friedrich Nietzsche, finally brings out the darkness that is predicted in the previous songs. Driving on deep drones and dreamy sax, this song slowly drags itself through my speakers. There's another band that I haven't mentioned yet, Mount Fuji Doomjazz Corporation. Yes, this spunds as eerie and creepy as them, stunning and fragile.
'Hidden By The Leaves' or 'Hagakure' is a guide for samurai warriors, written by Yamamoto Tsunetomo who was a samurai himself. This work describes a way of 'living as if one is already dead', a total submission to his lord and master through self sacrifice. It's a dark concept and the song inspired by it is no brighter. It brings back the solitary minimalism of the opener. Here the analog ambient returns, slowly driving forth on some drones and a jazzy guitar.
We close the album in Tibet, inspired by the Tibetan Book Of The Dead, 'Bardo Thodol'. I remember Master Musicians Of Bukkake have recorded a song with the same name and I'm quite intrigued by the similarities. This is another dream song, calm, soothing and otherworldly. This song has brought us to the end of an amazing journey where we can both enjoy music and learn a thing or two. As far as I'm concerned, this is an outstanding gem that could go straight into the Denovali stable. If you're looking for warm, organic ambient with a strange atmosphere, look no further, this is all you need.