Genre/Influences: Experimental, rhythmic-ambient, dark-cinematographic.
Format: Digital, CD.
Background/Info: Murmur Of Monks is a new Belgian project set up by ‘Humwawa’. The self-released debut album features eleven songs, which are clearly inspired by religious/spiritual themes.
Content: The artwork looks spiritual and that’s for sure an element that you can hear in the music composition. It’s however difficult to define “Sacrament” as one established music style rather than the fusion between numerous influences. Neo-classic piano arrangements have been merged with slow rhythm patterns while other cuts revealing darker ambient atmospheres have been carried by harder dance kicks. You’ll also notice orchestral arrangements and growling vocal parts.
+ + + : I first of all have to say a word about the amazing artwork of this alum. This is a styled digipak even leading formations can only dream of! Sound-wise Murmur Of Monks labels its music as ‘dark chamber dance’, which in a way stands for the different influences this album has been made of. It’s a real challenge, but I definitely support projects striving for innovation and differentiation. I especially enjoyed the most ambient/cinematic cuts carried by rhythmic. “Epiphany” and “Pentecost” both are my favorites, which makes me think of the music of horror movies driven by slow rhythms.
– – – : I like this challenge, but the time will tell if this sound challenge will catch the attention of a wider audience. I however miss a little bit more cohesion between all different influences.
Conclusion: Murmur Of Monks is an ambitious challenge, but at the same time, it also is an original concept and probably one of the most particular ones coming from the Belgian underground scene.
Best songs: “Epiphany”, “Pentecost”, “Purification Ritual”, “Dark Chamber Dance”.