Today, I still don't follow the scene that well but, thanks to this website, I still catch glimpses of how awesome this genre can be. With this particular album, for example, I can easily imagine myself standing in a massive tent at a metal festival, indulging myself in the sheer epicness of this music. I doubt that I will ever see Onirism live, since it's a one-man project, but still. Several songs on this album would have the exact same effect on me as Dimmu Borgir's 'Mourning Palace' when it rolled over an ecstatic audience.
Onirism hails from Nantes, France. The project is founded by Antoine Guibert (Hentgarm, Belenos), who does everything. And in this case, that is a lot. Guitars, both lead and rhythm, bass, drums, keyboards piano, flutes (I think), programming, clean vocals, blackened screams, songwriting, production, mastering... One way or another Guibert manages to blend all these talents into something that some of the bands I mentioned earlier couldn't even keep up with, at least not on this level of quality.
The album opens with what sounds like ritual folk music in the introduction. This blend of pagan percussion, Eastern and native instruments often return, giving the album a perfect setting. Then, first calm and careful the guitars and drums appear. Shortly after, the whole turns into a frenzy of blast-beats, piercing riffs and loads of atmospheric keyboards. 'Beginning Of An Era' and 'From the End to the Origins' are massive pieces of atmospheric black metal and they are far from the only ones on this album.
Yet, as impressed as I already am by these tracks, at 'Ephemeral World I' I am really stunned. This is arguably one of the best pieces of pagan metal music ever. Perhaps you can compare it to a blackened version of Sepultura's 'Kaiowas' where folk, metal and keyboards come together in a beautiful orgy of sound. 'Ephemeral World II' brings more alienating goodness. Both songs fit perfectly together and because of these two alone, I would recommend checking out this album.
This album surely is a discovery, immensely varied and highly immersive. It's great to see what Onirism can put into his music and how he manages to experiment and still maintain his credibility. Other highlights, and there's plenty of them, are 'The Old Man' and the haunting 'Weavers of Time'. It's perfectly clear that Guibert is a highly talented musician and songwriter. So go ahead, treat yourself to this brilliant piece of work, you will not regret it...