Golden Dawn Double LP and Demo In Stock
Released by Seed Stock and Distributed by NWN!
Golden Dawn “Rehearsal 1994″ Demo
This professionally manufactured, and shrink-wrapped cassette is limited to 200 copies and serves as the first issue of this Golden Dawn (Austria) recording from 1994.
Finally, a physical version of the first recordings from Golden Dawn comes in the form of “Rehearsal 1994” pro-cassette, an epic 15 minute journey of atmospheric and homemade black metal. One would assume that the first recordings of a band would be formative and mere sketches of the art form to come, however, with Traunmueller’s first recording you get highly detailed and engrossing epic tale of a song that displays dynamism, great use of keyboards, and sheer originality despite it being a band’s earliest endeavor.
This track is surprisingly, some of the most eccentric and forward-thinking material in the band’s catalog. The vocal style alone is wholly original while it utilizes a chanting type of singing and multi-layering production that often times reflects Gregorian chant more so than the typical black metal rasp. The ability to embody various moods and personalities over the course of one song is also remarkable in this recording. The songs shifts from a feeling of spirituality and sacredness to one that is full of ferocity and then shifts again into symphonic moments that are at once playful and bombastic. This recording may seem exploratory, but each style is executed to masterful effect.
Golden Dawn / Apeiron “Demos 1995″ Double LP
We cannot stress enough how crucial this recording is within the canon of Austrian black metal, and it is truly time to recognize the importance of these projects and the dynamic world created by Golden Dawn and its architect, Stefan Traunmuller.
There are A LOT of old demos getting reissue treatment these days, and within that spectrum there are many which have the charm and nostalgia of being from another era, but few of these recordings stand on their own as fully-conceived and fleshed out works of art. This release is not only remarkable for its expansive range of styles but for the sheer scope of vision that’s rarely found on the demo tape format. I can personally assure you that this is one of those rarest dark gems that up until now has criminally gone, for the most part, unacknowledged.
Golden Dawn formed as a one man project around 1993 and unleashed their great debut demo “Lullaby” two years later. The initial style of music is a combination of raw nordic Black Metal with a huge reliance on keyboards and ambient passages to provide a deeper and more mystical feeling that empowers the music. Also in 1995, Traunmuller decided to release a split between his main project Golden Dawn and a new project, Apeiron, one that was purely dark ambient based.
The result was the split demo 95 (originally issued on Impure Creations, France). The style of BM here is epic in terms of complexity of composition and epic in terms of the majestic feeling enveloping each song. The collection is truly a masterful execution of medieval ambient passages paired with raw atmospheric black metal.
One thing that really stands out is how varied the style is across these recordings, yet it’s cohesion as an entire story or epic tale is incredibly consistent. Within the boundaries of black metal and dark ambient Traunmuller was wildly inventive and his courage really shines listening to this musical odyssey over 20 years later.
Not only is this a prime example of raw, demo-era BM from Austria (see: Abigor, Summoning, Pazuzu, Trifixion, Amestigon et al) but the Apeiron material is also some of the strongest dark-ambient (or dark-wave) music from within the mid-90s BM scene.
Whereas virtually all of these types of projects are wholly indebted to Mortiis (and the style he defined), Apeiron has more of a unique identity that draws from the cosmic synthesizer music of Jean-Michel Jarre or ancient eastern meditation music. Now with this keyboard driven style enjoying a revival (sometimes referred to as ‘dungeon-synth’), the importance of these recordings is more crucial than ever.