AMN Reviews: Creation VI – Deus Sive Natura (2017; Cryo Chamber)

Dark ambient music can go in so many directions, but Creation VI has a new twist on the genre, at least to these ears. First, the recording medium is analog tape, which gives the album a subjective richness and warmth often not apparent on pure digital works. Second, the instrumentation is unusual. Blockflute, Chinese flute, shruti-box, harmonica, ocarina, kazoo, bells, chimes, seeds, and seedpods are present in a drone- and wall-filled excursion. The result is a percussion-based, aboriginal feel spanning five long tracks.

But unlike others (notably Steve Roach) who explored the tribal ambient space, Deus Sive Natura is primarily foreboding, with dense chords and distant bells subtly combining with the wind instruments to create a slowly-shifting, ominous soundscape. In several tracks, the percussion plays a significant role, contributing to a haunting atmosphere rather than supplying a rhythm for the drones. Voices combine with these drones in hypnogogic chants, as do boiling electroacoustic elements.

Deus Sive Natura (translated as “god or nature”) is an exploration of ancient places and peoples therein, the latter seeking to understand their place in the universe through ritual and music. Aside from any such imagery, it represents a strong contribution to the dark ambient genre. Recommended.

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