Members of Omega-Massif tended to describe their music as “heavyweight mountain doom”. Inspired by nature, their songs were filled with space and a certain sense of might, as if they were paying a tribute to some ancient forest deity. Cranial, a four piece Würzburg outfit, which along with Phantom Winter and Blacksmoker were formed after Omega-Massif split up, didn’t choose a treaded path of a previous band, instead deciding to create something new on the ruins of the old.
RELEASE DATE: 02 September 2015 LABEL: Moment of Collapse Records
If Omega-Massif lived on the top of a mountain, then Cranial moved into one of these globalized megacities where everyone can be anonymous. Listening to “Dead Ends” evokes a sense of being contained in a small room and torn apart by anger. You yearn for some contact with another human being, but you’re on your own. So you just scream into empty walls feeling more and more hopeless with each minute.
The music as well as the lyrics are soaked in anger and crippling confusion. Cranial seems to have leaned on the edge of sanity while writing this album, filled themselves with all kinds of anxieties and kept the valve shut tightly until they exploded with negativity. This is by no means one of these depressing albums that are actually meant to purify you and make you feel better. It is a raw and intense study of hopelessness that will make you curl up in the corner of your room sobbing about how pointless it all is.
Despite the fact that the EP consists of only two songs (which last 22 minutes though!), Cranial already managed to work out their own style which is based on both experience and a craving for trying out new things. However it may sound, I deeply enjoyed the journey into the dark pit of loneliness-induced madness. I really hope “Dead Ends” is only an introduction into what Cranial is capable of in terms of both writing bone-crushing riffs and creating the mood of despair.