Over the last few days I’ve wanted to find a good lo fi synth to share with everyone, the problem was I wanted something really phenomenal and all the ones I was trying were good but didn’t quite have the sound I was wanted. I went through quite a few until I found exactly the sound I was looking for. Wede (a word meaning either woods or water depending on how far back you go in the etymology) put out an album in October of 2016 called “Last Rays of a Dying Sun.” It’s exactly the lo fi, gritty, raw sounding dungeon synth I was hoping to share with you all.
With a single song that stretches over twenty minutes, you can expect Wede to do one of two things, either he can divide said song into several different movements or that one song will have a few riffs and melodies played over and over again. Thankfully, Wede decided to go with the former and combined several different themes into one surprisingly cohesive song. The music was, as I stated, pretty lo fi but that didn’t stop it from having a wonderful melody and plenty of brutal atmosphere.
Imagine the organs of old cathedrals, the massive, monolithic structures that seem to produce sounds right from the earth. Now age those cathedrals and organs until the people no longer use them and shadows and cobwebs have taken control. Put some thunderheads in the sky threatening to explode with rain and hail and lightening at any moment. Can you imagine all of that? That’s the atmosphere in Last Rays of a Dying Sun. It’s cold and frigid and eerie yet filled with a sort of primal beauty, a feral rawness. The production is maybe a little better than “the Burzum albums” so the sounds aren’t quite as scratchy and repetitive but they still have an edge to them. It’s fuzzy but the music is still recognizable. The melodies and themes of the album are still identifiable.
The album has several lush themes of melancholy and sorrow interwoven into the music. The narrative can be seen as one of two things, it all of course depends on the viewpoint of the listener, it is either a painful and sorrowful dirge for the sun as it’s light goes out, or it’s a dark, foreboding hymn to the night. I might pick a dirge of the sun just because I felt more melancholic emotions in the music that ecstatic ones but I could sense an undercurrent of those ecstatic emotions as well. The only downside I might put on the album, is the vocals, or spoken word, or whatever you want to call it. It’s only in one place but even in that one place the vocals seem out of place, almost enough to bring the listener out of the music. From my experience with lo fi and orchestral forms of dungeon synth, I’d say that the only one that could make vocals work would be the orchestral. Evidence could come to me and I might change my mind but for now I will stand that ground.
Despite that minor setback, Wede has made a wonderful album in Last Rays of the Dying Sun. Dungeon synth was given birth to by the black metal movement and when you listen to Wede, you can hear the raw vibe of black metal waiting to burst forth. Great stuff here!
Listen and support the music!