What I love so much about Erang’s music is the sheer variety of sounds he is able to incorporate into his world. Erang is more than just dungeon synth even though that is resolutely what he is. The music is more than just music for him, myself, and all of his fans. The music of Erang has acted as a doorway into the Lands of the Five Seasons, as he calls it, since the inception of the project. Erang is the sonic portion of that world, but it not the only part. There are maps and drawings, and maybe even a novel will be coming in 2017, that round out the highly detailed vision of one man. Each album has offered something new for the fans, opened up a new realm of possibilities for exploration and adventure, for heartbreak and triumph. With each new release, Erang enriches this world that we have come to enjoy as much as we enjoy Middle-Earth, Azeroth, or Cimmeria. King of Nothing, Slave to No One is no different in that regard but the album could not be more different from its predecessors in terms of scope and atmosphere.
First, a few stray thoughts on the album and the artwork. One, I love the logo for this album. By far it’s the best one he’s used, and he uses many. It feels like it’s the most connected with the feel of the album itself. According to his Bandcamp page, it was made as a tribute to Isengard, Fenriz of Darkthrone’s old folk project. It truly looks amazing, doing the original logo honor. Two, the artwork looks both nihilistic and holistic at the same time. It has a very natural, very melancholic feel to it. I can’t say I love it more, it fits much of the tone of the album quite well; the art gives King of Nothing, Slave to No One a very atmospheric black metal feel.
This album, more so than any of the previous Erang albums, is focused on the people that actually live in the Land of the Five Seasons. King of Nothing is not necessarily about the kings and the knights and the adventurers, it’s about the ordinary people. From old women, to young boys, crazy adventurers, and maidens. Each song is dedicated to one of them and the theme of the music is special and specific to that song. We are given somber, doomy music with songs like “The Flow of Time is Always Cruel” to mischievous and youthful in “Day of the Troll.” The album is wildly diverse, utilizing different instruments, melodies, tones, and harmonies to represent each and every one of the characters of the album. Each song is a snapshot into their world at a random moment in time. There’s no significant story happening, just life. That’s the kind of fantasy I love. I love fantasy stories where people go about their day and life happens and adventures and trials and perils happen in pace with that.
King of Nothing is another wonderfully produced, minimalistic piece of dungeon synth that defies and defines the confines of the genre. Each album that Erang does pushes the boundaries of what people think dungeon synth should and does contain. He expands the genre with his unique sound and storytelling. Erang is a master craftsmen of dungeon synth, the art of scopcraeft, as it were. And despite his amazing talents and vision and imagination, his music remains humble and honest. You cannot ask for a better piece of music. But it’s not just music, it’s artistry on several different levels. The Land of the Five Seasons is a real place because Erang has introduced it to us, he created music and maps and pictures but he left it for us to explore as well, for us to see what we will and want we want. What do you see in the Land of the Five Seasons? What do you want to see? The possibilities are vast and varied in this new world.
Listen and support the music!