Thursday, September 25, 2014

Picture Ann - A Bone Case for Papery Skin Review

Picture Ann is a strange band compared to the normal music I review on Temple of Darkness.  It is a unique and strangely unsettling mix of dark ambient with doom metal and black metal influences.  Their latest album, A Bone Case for Papery Skin is an instrumental journey through one's mind, exploring the deepest and darkest thoughts within ones' self.

Like I said, the album is completely instrumental.  There are only instruments and melodies to tell a story.  Picture Ann has a natural knack for being able to do so, as the soul member utilizes his talent for creating dark and desolate melodies to weave into the music.  This creates a dull and solemn atmosphere which is unsettling and at times, a bit disturbing.  It almost makes you a bit squeamish while listening to it, at points.
The instrumentation is quite unique as it incorporates elements of metal but also jazz and classical as well.  Just imagine Pink Floyd mixed with the sound of Cathedral or Candlemass because at times, that is what it sounds like!  There is not very much percussion present within the release but when it is, it compliments the other instruments well.  It doesn't stand out, nor is it meant to.  The guitar work is incredible in the sense that it is used in so many different ways.  It is used as a droning noise in the background but also a lot for the melody in front as well.  Sound effects are also utilized to give the atmosphere a bit more kick instead of the music just sounding like an instrumental band.  The synth parts sound quite creepy and scary at times, which mixes amazing with the sound of the blues-oriented guitar in the background.  Another part of the release that I typically don't compliment in reviews is the artwork.  The dark and depressive nature of this massive church that is looming over you is the perfect visual representation of Picture Ann's music.  It is a terrifying picture but also quite beautiful.
Picture Ann is a band that some metal heads will like but others wont.  It isnt an album that I could play every day and love every second of it.  It is my background music when I am just hanging out around the house and not doing anything in particular and it works very well like that!


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