Bast - Nanoångström review




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Band: Bast
Album: Nanoångström
Release date: November 2018


01. Distant Suns
02. Far Horizons
03. The Beckoning Void
04. Nanoångström
05. A Red Line through Black
06. The Ghosts Which Haunt The Space Between The Stars


There's something special about finally getting to hear the sophomore effort from a band whose debut you reviewed in the past. In a way it feels like that little baby you discovered is now an adult, and you get to smile proudly at its evolution. And boy, have the guys in Bast grown up nicely with Nanoångström.

So in case you weren't paying attention back in 2014 when they swooped down with their Spectres debut, Bast play a style of blackened doom metal that really seems to cover almost all that both black and doom have to offer. The sound on Nanoångström is essentially an upgraded version of their debut: not overly different stylistically, but it is noticeable when listening that the band have definitely given their sound some refinement and learned how to transition between the different aspects of their compositions more effectively. "Far Horizons" is as good an example as any, moving as it does from a plodding doomy opening to some more melodic, airy guitar lines, then into some more intense, upbeat black metal territory, and finally bringing it all home by going back to the plodding doom sound at its end.

While it's not too much of a deviation from the sound of Spectres, one big difference on Nanoångström is in how groovier and in touch with a greater sense of rhythm Bast are now. In this regard it's definitely the drumming draws the most attention as an area of improvement, as throne man Jon Lee is all over the place on this album. Focus on "The Beckoning Void" especially for an idea of just how well he moves between thunderous blasts during the more black metal sections, a more rhythmic approach when things get doomy, and even a much looser, almost jazzy delivery during the more melodic sections.

If you were to ask what makes Bast distinct from other bands in the blackened doom spectrum, the answer probably boils down to the fact that they just merge black and doom, and transition between the various sounds of each, at a much greater level than you see from many other bands. As with Spectres, on Nanoångström there's a real "something for everyone" type feeling, as the album seems to come with all the best from both the black metal and doom worlds: pounding, catchy riffs, up tempo blast beat madness, relaxed atmospheric passages, and more. While Bast aren't changing up their formula too significantly here, they certainly prove that they're getting better at it, and Nanoångström is a late year highlight for extreme doom metal that fans of it would be unwise to ignore.

Go get dat sucka.


 



Written on 23.12.2018 by Comforting the disturbed and disturbing the comfortable since 2013.


Comments

Comments: 3   Visited by: 45 users
23.12.2018 - 20:18
musclassia
Yeah, really good follow-up, one of my favoured extreme doom groups. They also put on a solid show opening for Mournful Congregation and Esoteric earlier this month
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23.12.2018 - 20:33
Apothecary
PsyCHEdelic
Written by musclassia on 23.12.2018 at 20:18

Yeah, really good follow-up, one of my favoured extreme doom groups. They also put on a solid show opening for Mournful Congregation and Esoteric earlier this month

Damn, that sounds like a really great lineup between those three. I caught Bast at Roadburn the first year I went, but I'd really love to see them again.
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Now who should I call? Should I call Mr. Strawberry?
No, I don't think I'll call Mr. Strawberry. I don't think he's taking calls.
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23.12.2018 - 22:04
musclassia
Written by Apothecary on 23.12.2018 at 20:33

Written by musclassia on 23.12.2018 at 20:18

Yeah, really good follow-up, one of my favoured extreme doom groups. They also put on a solid show opening for Mournful Congregation and Esoteric earlier this month

Damn, that sounds like a really great lineup between those three. I caught Bast at Roadburn the first year I went, but I'd really love to see them again.


Yeah, I agreed to go to the gig cos my mate was travelling down to London and had a spare ticket, I hadn't even seen the support acts, just thought I could probably handle a MC gig to hang out with my mate (I knew them, but wasn't really a fan apart from finding The Book Of Kings more likeable than most funeral doom I'd heard). Then looked at the event page and realised I recognised both support acts, which I really didn't expect for an extreme doom gig in a pub on the outskirts, let alone them both being bands I like.

Tbh, MC were probably my least favourite, but it wasn't helped by them starting 30mins late, meaning I only saw 20-25min before I had to go home. Bast were very solid (and made an impressive sound for 3 people), and Esoteric were really damn good (I also dug the singer's microphone headset, looked very weird making growling faces without a big mic and stand in the way); ended up enjoying the gig a lot more than expected.
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