At first this review was planned as a part of some kind of "best of 2009" thing I wanted to do, but I decided that those lists kinda suck, because you get bombed by them in every TV show and magazine around this time of the year. But since I have the opinion that this IS one of the best records of 2009, I'll review it.
"Zeitenwende" was released in I think April 2009, and the first time I listened to it (or to a CD-R, because it wasn't avaible in January, obviously) was while we drove to a show we had to play, and outside the sun was setting, and there was snow, and everything looked quite empty, calm and cold, and now everytime I listen to those four songs (with a total length of about 40 minutes all together) I think of that situation, because it all fit so well. So this is some totally misantropic, cold and depressing piece of Black Metal art. There’s only one guy behind the band, who played all the instruments and recorded and mixed everything by himself. But don’t expect some basement-sounding, raw and numb (and boring) shit, this record is really fucking epic. Besides the excellent, diversified drumming I really love the many different effects and sounds Wiedergänger (that's the alias of the guy) used for the guitars, everytime there is some athmospheric, long part and you think, "shit, this is atmospheric and intense as fuck" the guitar sound changes a little bit, or some chorus-like effect hits, or the guitar starts to „cry“ (I don’t know how to express it any other way, I’ve never heard anything like that), so that everything gets even more intense. But don't get me wrong, this isn't some shoegazing influenced easy listening (and boring) Black Metal, it's still heavy, with loads of double bass and mostly fast as hell, the difference to many one-man Black Metal projects is, that this record is perfectly composed. The lyrics are in German, and I really think they are like poems. Although they're written in simple words, they have such a heavy meaning, and you really realize that there was put a lot of time into them. If you read them while listening to the record, you kinda get sucked in by the athmosphere and darkness, and you could be in a room full of people, you'd feel desperate and lonely anyway. Even though Wiedergänger probably hates the comparison, if you dig Black Metal like Wolves In The Throne Room (music wise) there's quite a big chance you'll like Total Negation. But basically I just don’t know any band that sounds like this, it's really outstanding, intense athmospheric and thrilling music that demands your attention and is, like mentioned at the beginning, one of my favourite records released this year.
Temple Of Torturous (the label that put "Zeitenwende" out)