I feel really harsh marking this release down because it really is a “mood” album and to fully appreciate the haunting aura surrounding Salem’s Wound, you really have to be in the right frame of mind. A veteran of the New York hardcore scene, Karyn Crisis has brought together quite an eclectic array of musicians to create this, her latest solo work.

Joining her on this effort is husband Davide Tiso, formerly of experimental Italian outfit Ephal Duath, with this collision of musical minds creating what is the bulk of the sound on this album. By rights though, Crisis’ hardcore roots and Tiso’s experimental direction in Ephel Duath shouldn’t really gel together as well as they do on Salem’s Wound, but strangely, they do.

From the droning “Ancient Ways” to the haunting “Father,” Salem’s Wound is a true musical rollercoaster that really forces you to pay attention. To describe Salem’s Wound as a challenging listen would sound harsh and is probably doing the album a disservice, especially considering the musical pedigree on show. However, it isn’t an album that you’re just going to stick on for a quick listen, this is a release that requires your full, undivided attention. If you can’t give it, then sadly you’ll not be able to appreciate the full effect of what Crisis’ and Tiso are trying to create.

Elsewhere on Salem’s Wound, Ross Dolan from New York death metal stalwarts Immolation joins the party as the album flows and ebbs from passages of haunting, ambient music to the more brutal, droning material, the latter clearly influenced by Dolan’s input. Like I said, rating this album down feels like I’m doing it a disservice but please, if you’re going to plunge into it, do yourself a favour and make sure you have the time and space to full immerse yourself into it or you’ll miss out on so much.

Track Listing:

01. Omphalos
02. The Alchemist
03. Ancient Ways
04. Aradia
05. Mother
06. Father
07. Goddess Of Light
08. Howl At The Moon
09. Pillars
10. The Secret
11. Salem’s Wounds
12. The Sword + The Stone
13. The Ascent

Run Time: 61:32
Release Date: March 9, 2015

Check out the song “The Alchemist” here.

I have an unhealthy obsession with bad horror movies, the song Wanted Dead Or Alive and crap British game shows. I do this not because of the sex, drugs and rock 'n' roll lifestyle it affords me but more because it gives me an excuse to listen to bands that sound like hippos mating.