Label: Aural Music
Three similar bands: Alcest/Ulver/Palace of Worms

Rating: HHHHHHH (3/7)
Reviewer: Daniel Källmalm
01. Biomass
02. Alluvial
03. Harvestman
04. Sphagnum
05. Disturbance
06. Acclimation
07. Abiotic
08. Red Crown

Otrebor – Vocals, Drums, Hammered Dulcimer
D. Neal – Hammered Dulcimer
A. Lindo – Vocals, Harmonium
David Tiso – Bass
R. Chiang – Hammered Dulcimer

I: The Suicide Tree (2011)
II: A Rose From the Dead (2011)
III: Doom in Bloom (2012)
IV: Mandragora (2013)
VI: Flora (2014)
Hammer of Botany (EP 2015)
Green Metal (EP 2016)
Collective: The Shape Of He To Come (2017)


Artwork by Førtifem
Mixed and Mastered by Fredrik Nordstrom at Studio Fredman, Gothenburg, Sweden

Released 2019-11-08
Reviewed 2020-01-25


aural music

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This is the story about a botanist dreaming about the end of humanity and a reclamation of the Earth by nature. A pretty diligent project this, with plenty of releases in the years they have been around. Usually it is a one-man writing, but this is a like the previous album a collective effort meaning that the entire live entity have been writing and recording the album, probably meaning that this album has a somewhat different style to some of the previous albums – I have not heard Botanist before this album so I cannot judge that. What I can write is that the band is described as green metal meaning that they have an environmental theme to their music. That might be something of the times considering that humanity isn’t really kind to the environment, or the climate. The band think that if we annoy Earth, it will retaliate and kill us and then move on – perhaps like what happened on Venus with runaway greenhouse effect leading to a surface climate of over 400°C. It could happen here as well, Earth and Venus are like Twin planets, very similar.

The music is avantgarde or experimental black metal, they use Hammered Dulcimer instead of Guitars giving them a slightly different sound. But experimental and avantgarde black metal isn’t very different from more regular black metal in the ears of the general audience, you have to be more initiated in the genre to really pick out the differences. Not much variation throughout and the songs bland together to form a mass that starts, goes on, and then ends. Pretty typical black metal vocals too, pretty boring vocals I think and kind of a let-down for the album as a whole.

The sound is pretty average I think, an experimental band should be more dramatic when it comes to sound, this is a bit boring in terms of sound, and that is despite the dulcimer thing and the fresh and original ideas they offer. I have seen many positives written about this album, praising originality and stuff – problem is that most albums are positively reviewed this one is far from as exciting as it is made up to appear. If you like the black metal genre you will most likely be positive towards this album, if you generally don’t listen to the black metal genre Ecosystem will most likely not be positive about it.

Ecosystem offers some interesting and pretty exciting things, but overall it is a pretty drab album that will not change anyone’s opinion about the black metal genre. It is a pretty decent album but I doubt it will make anything more than the tiniest ripple in the waters of music. Perhaps they make some of those black metallers take a bit more care of the environment they are living in.