"from a dark chasm below" is a debut release on loki that was the result of band's two-year work. sweeping dark sonic waves with very sparse percussion elements, water drops, subtle chimes and bass-drones are mixed with ritualistic chants and voice samples. therefore you have it all, the usual ingredients of dark ambient. it is very well-done, with solid atmosphere and excellent production, but somehow there's nothing that catches my attention for long enough. unlike their labelmates inade, herbst9 never presents that little element that is a cornerstone of many inade tracks, bringing in the necessary contrasting element to break and at the same time enhance the monotony. herbst9 creates solid dark compositions that slowly move without climaxing or breaking the atmosphere. one has to listen really closely to catch multitude of subtle music elements used on every track.
slowly unfolding "snake of saigon" attracted me with its dark pulses and sweeps that move through dark shadows. on your way through the track the shadows part for a moment to let through the sound of bizarre instrument, or part of what seems to be a news broadcast, or sound of a chopper. "in the vein of purusa" develops a steady percussion with tribal screams breaking through. darkness is filled with cut-up sample of broadcasts, fading string instruments creating a chaotic atmosphere directed by a slow percussion.
the tracks are way too stretched and slowly developing movements take you nowhere; unfortunately I was not able to fully get into the music, being fascinated by only few parts of every track. I do have to say that I was very impressed by the variety of elements used - the way tribal screams, percussion, heavy drones, multiple ethnic elements, organic sounds, voice samples, and many different instruments are put together with the music is fascinating, and often seems like the band is carried away by using them instead of working on the structure of the track. I am sure that in future the band will develop further its unique sound, giving us another chance to share its music vision.