6/23/17 – Chelsea Wolfe “Ἀποκάλυψις” (2011)

Also called Apocalypsis, this album was my introduction to Chelsea Wolf back in 2011. She makes a unique blend of Folk and Doom Metal, a sort of slow, heavy, but also light mix. Her breathy voice is swathed in reverb so it gives off a big ghostly or otherworldly feel her music. She uses samples very subtly to create an interesting atmosphere of dread and unease, and often applying layer after layer of sound. This all does make it a bit foggy and directionless at times, but at others it creates a wonderfully gloomy atmosphere while still cohesive.

Strangely enough she starts off the album with Primal//Carnal – a short little sample of her growling and gnarling. It leads right into the more normal sounding Mer, an upbeat but dreary song. Tracks (Tall Bodies) is an eerie yet romantic song in a Bonnie and Clyde sort of way, and the slow pacing pairs well with Wolfe’s ghostly voice. This is one of the songs that keep me going back to this album, almost like a guilty pleasure. After that she dives into the Punk-Rock sounding Demons, probably the loudest and fastest she gets on the album. The reverb nearly drowns her out complete apart from the chorus. Movie Screen finishes off the first half of the album with some brilliant atmosphere led by a heavy bass and anxious, noisy sampling that continually build on each other.

Moses might be my favorite on the album, it’s a wonderfully smooth slow jam, and the chorus is just so smooth and relaxing. I really like how it the song takes it’s time and flows very smoothly. Both Moses and Demons were recordings of her debut The Grime And The Glow (2010). That album is even more lo-fi than this one, and the difference between the two are most evident in the comparisons between those songs. I do like this album’s version better, the debut feels a bit too lo-fi, too loose. Unfortunately the second half of Ἀποκάλυψις just isn’t as compelling as the first. Still, this is an album worth checking out, as well as the rest of her discography. Her later albums are more and more polished and she turns up the Metal influences especially. She’s definitely an artist to keep an eye on these days, and her next album is coming up later this year.