Several months ago I’ve discovered a Russian one man band project called Skarpseian. It’s the dungeon synth ambient project with an atmosphere of old decayed castles and vast medieval landscapes. The music is quite sad and depressing, with low looping keys and sound effects. I was never deeply into all this ambient stuff, but this project somehow hooked me up. It reminds me of the old-school computer games and the atmosphere of board RPG games…

Skygge Slottet

“Skygge Slottet” is the second album by Skarpseian. It has quite a raw sound and depressing atmosphere multiplied with the very cliche, but still pretty album cover artwork. As far as I know, this album was re-released as “Den første Gnister i Mørket” in 2016, but I decided to listen to the original songs.

Tracklist

  1. Varoffer
  2. Eldafjord
  3. Targenur
  4. Mork Vandreren
  5. Galdratungl

Pros

Style. This album definitely has its own atmosphere which suits well for various activities: reading, watching television, writing, talking. But it’s hard to sit still, concentrate and listen to the music because all the songs are quite similar and repetitive. Comparing to another album I listened, “Skygge Slottet” sounds very similar, but slightly more lo-fi.

Quality. It’s bad. But for dungeon synth genre the more lo-fi you produce — the better it goes.

Cons

Length. This album is very short. It has only five tracks with the total length of 30 minutes.

Overall

I don’t know, how to recommend this kind of music. “Skygge Slottet” is very atmospheric and calm, but depressing and repetitive release, which can be interesting for people, who really like ambient and dungeon synth genres.

You can listen to it while playing some board games, or be reading medieval literature and so on. You can give it a try and left your opinion in the comments section below.

Album cover via skarpseian.bandcamp.com

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