I love stumbling upon new artists, especially debuts. I recently starting following the Facebook page Doom Heart, and, contrary to what some people may think, there is actually quite a diversity in that genre. Most of it I would consider “progressive” in one way or another. Anyways, they posting about the debut album from Hermyth, and the artwork grabbed my interest. Starseeds released on February 22nd through Meuse Music Records, and I love it.
Hermyth is a duo. The lineup includes Nick Magister (Ghostheart Nebula) and Therese Tofting (Fairy, Funeral Void). As best as I can tell, Nick comes to us from Italy, while Therese hails from Norway. So, this is a project facilitated by the internet, like so many nowadays.
Their music is what I would label as doomgaze, though I would specifically call it cosmic drone, a term that only ISON uses for their music, as far as I can tell. This newer subgenre is downtempo ambient music with elements of doom, post-rock, and electronica. It is highly spiritual and ethereal in tone, evocative and potent within its atmosphere. This is exactly what Starseeds sounds like. In some ways, this sounds like Trees of Eternity meets ISON.
I would not call this a copycat or clone, though. This project has some distinct marks that are theirs alone. The main thing that sets them apart is Therese’s voice. She has a poetic and judicious tone. She is cautious, Romantic, and deliberate in her delivery and in the direction she swings a vocal melody. This gives the album a gravity I did not expect, like the universe itself communicating with us.
The album features plenty of dark guitars and fuzzy electronic elements, but these are all done with reserve and with pure artistry. The heart of this experience is the message and the melody and the mesmerizing aura. Nothing is added that detracts from this.
And the lyrics here are quite beautiful. I like when a band forms in order to communicate certain concepts, and thus the debut is often quite focused, at least lyrically. Starseeds is about the universe within us, and the universe outside of us. It is about we conscious beings as the universe itself. It is an inspiring, enlightening, and vibrant message, one that I have heard in other albums, but never gets old for me. I find some of the most beautiful music ever is related to this type of message.
The album has 6 songs and is about 36 minutes long. It isn’t a lengthy album by any stretch, but it doesn’t need more than it has. It is a complete experience. Certain tracks, such as the opener “The Monad” and “Halos”, have voiceovers through portions of them. Now, I know that some people aren’t fans of voiceovers, but I feel like these are done well and are meaningful.
I love each and every track here. My favorites are “Aeon”, “Halos”, and “The Kiss of Venus”. Some of the other tracks feature more harmonization from Therese, rather than vocals, so I think that is why these three stand out for me. “Aeon” is so good. I love the synth tone used on it, and Therese’s voice comes in with such confidence and endowment. It is a gorgeous track.
“Halos” is a mix between vocals and spoken word from Therese. The music has some metallic meat to it, especially during the climax near the end, and the whole song simply feels coherent and transcendent. Even more guitars arrive on the closer, “The Kiss of Venus”, a mystical and striking song. I love how most of it is dialed up to 10 (for this type of music), and Therese really emotes. It is such a perfect ending flourish for this record.
I love this debut from Hermyth. I want so badly to hear more music in this vein, and this certainly satisfies that for now. Starseeds is an exotically evocative, poignantly meaningful, and psychically sacrosanct record that I will be listening to a bunch over the next several months.
Find Hermyth online: