Ceremony In The Stillness


LP version. Includes download code. Silkscreened, hand-numbered sleeves designed at SmilingPaperGhosts. Ceremony In The Stillness is the new album from A-Sun Amissa on Gizeh Records and Consouling Sounds. For their fourth album, A-Sun Amissa plunge deeper than before. Guitars come to the fore, and heavy, distorted chords are present from the off, complemented by desolate ambient passages of sound. The claustrophobic atmospheres remain but combine with a new density and sonic experimentation to present a huge leap forward in structure and composition. Ceremony In The Stillness hints at themes from the previous three outings while pushing the project into new territories. The intricate nuances and lulling melodies from Desperate In Her Heavy Sleep (GZH 037CD, 2012) reappear while the billowing guitars of You Stood Up for Victory, We Stood Up for Less (GZH 044LP, 2013) are referenced throughout. In comparison to The Gatherer (2017), there is a firmer direction here as the album weaves through elements of doom, dark ambient, and post-rock, placing its unique mark firmly into the ears of the listener. A-Sun Amissa is the project of Gizeh founder Richard Knox (The Rustle of the Stars, Shield Patterns, and Glissando). Knox takes a central role here, but we see several collaborators contributing to the record. As album opener "The Black Path" unfurls, the cello of Jo Quail creeps through the thick wall of guitar to offer a moment of calm before the song comes to life with the introduction of drums from Archelon's TJ Fairfax. Alongside a dense and hypnotically repetitive riff, it's A-Sun Amissa's heaviest moment to date as the song collapses under its own weight to leave a crumbling and uneasy passage of cello and guitar drone. Intertwining guitars take center stage on the "With Wearied Eyes" as the atmosphere harks back to the band's earlier work. "The Skulk", meanwhile, evokes The Gatherer as David McLean's saxophone unravels around the ondes Martenot of Christine Ott. The record then takes a turn as "No Perception of Light"'s soporific opening gives way to a mesmerizing beat which develops into a wall of crunching guitars and electronics before "Remembrancer" closes with chiming guitars and bowed strings before evolving into a haunting orchestral outro that concludes the record. It's clear that Knox is comfortable being on the outside looking in, and in expanding A-Sun Amissa's sonic palette, it only adds to the intrigue of what comes next.