Vinyl LP pressing
Portland, OR-based Chasma are part of a sub-genre of metal known as "Cascadian black metal," which primarily comes from the Pacific-Northwest and is often characterized by long, atmospheric songs. Declarations of the Grand Artificer is their debut full-length – the band formed in 2008 and aside from a demo in 2009, this is their only release. Declarations is composed of just three songs, but clocks in at 33 minutes. That's a serious slab of black metal and it's quite impenetrable for the uninitiated, especially since this distinctly falls into the depressive end of the black metal spectrum. Chasma are actively working against an entry point into the music. There are a few shuddering, shifting points, transitions with a bit of ripple and give, but even these few moments of suppleness have an uncomfortably reptilian quality, something untrustworthy in the tone. The timbre of the strings isn't the rustle of water over stone, but that of snakeskin. Chasma compare themselves to other "ecological" black metal bands (Agalloch, Wolves in the Throne Room), but unlike these peers, Chasma are unwilling to stoop, to bend, to gentle themselves, and their music suffers for their inflexibility.