AMN Reviews: Ager Sonus – Book of the Black Earth (2017; Cryo Chamber)

Ager Sonus is the dark ambient project of Germany’s Thomas Langewehr. On Book of the Black Earth he offers up an amalgam of flutes and synths with electroacoustic elements that is sure to please purveyors that genre.

Timing in around 50 minutes, Langewehr tells a tale of a doomed journey. As just a few examples, the first three tracks reflect this theme. Through the Desert features the aforementioned flutes over ominous synth tones and lightly-distorted waves of electronics. The Dead City consists of oscillating drones and echoing percussion, while Discoveries incorporates crackling distortion resembling the movement of rubble, voice-like elements, and baleful drones.

Book of the Black Earth ends with the 12-minute Awakening, which begins in a pastoral fashion, at least when compared to its predecessor tracks. This interlude ends, however, with the creaking of doors and melancholy piano that finishes the trek on a note of despair.

This album is a solid effort and sure to please those who enjoy the darker works of Robert Rich and Alio Die. Recommended.