Band – Dysthymia
Album – Dysthymia
Country of Origin – USA
Genre – Depressive Black Metal
Release Date – December 10, 2021
Label – Fólkvangr Records
Author – Hayduke X
A quick look at the members of Dysthymia shows why a debut release is so good. Namely, the duo are both members of the incredible Dzö-nga. That should be evidence enough to expect high quality from this release, and I am not disappointed. Except in broad generalities, however, quality is where the overlap stops. The more established Dzö-nga play atmospheric folk black metal while Dysthymia explores the depressive side of the genre. The sounds are really quite distinct to the point that I would not have guessed the connection just from listening.
Musically, Dysthymia is the work of Ray King, who handles all the drum programming, guitar, and bass work. His touch ranges from subtly mournful to deeply anguished, cycling through, as if through the stages of grief. Vocally, Dysthymia is the work of Grushenka Ødegård. She gives a varied approach, constant only in the strength of her voices. Ethereal cleans float through the atmosphere created by King, side by side with tormented shrieks and woe-filled howls.
Depressive black metal should take the listener on an emotional journey. The build and release (rinse, repeat) of Dysthymia does just that. Tensions are raised to the point just beyond breaking, then let go. Rage and sorrow build, mountainous and tortured, the cycle back into relief. The ride is dark, and often hopeless. I also find it cathartic. Come into the black well to see for yourself.
Biography: Hayduke X has been writing for MoshPitNation since June of 2016. He is also a contributor to The Metal Wanderlust. Prior to joining the MoshPitNation team, Hayduke published reviews on his own blog Rage and Frustration. In addition, he has DJ’ed an online metal radio show of the same name as his blog, written for TOmetal.com, done interviews for Metal Rules, and collaborated with The Art of B Productions to create video interviews with a wide variety of bands.