Leviathan – Scar Sighted

Scar Sighted is the sixth full-length album of Jef “Wrest” Whitehead’s one-man black metal project Leviathan.

Starting the album off with a nice touch, we have a synth-based, partial interpretation of one of the songs that appears later on in the album which is followed by a, for Leviathan, surprisingly low tuned song that actually reminds me of something you’d hear on an Impetuous Ritual album.

The next track called Dawn Vibration starts out kind of average but takes a turn for the better after a change of pace halfway through the song with Wrest bringing in those terrorized, insane screams that lead over into a downward spiral of riffs after which the song mostly returns to its status quo.

Within Thrall is the next really remarkable song on this album for me, starting off with layered clean vocals that form a choir-like intro to the song with a really twisted, dark atmosphere which is something that Wrest utilizes quite nicely in a few places throughout the entire album. Overall this track presents a slightly bouncier version of Leviathan’s sound.

One thing I really liked about the next song, A Veil is Lifted, is that the bass in this song is a lot more prevalent and from this point onward the drums on this album just seem a lot more dynamic and creative.

Next up is a doomy detour on the title track of this album that actually breaches the 10 minute mark. Scar Sighted comes forth with a really cavernous, dreary atmosphere that is mostly built up by the distant, tortured screams that are placed throughout the entire song. Towards the end of the song there is a vocal sample that ushers in the last quarter of the song. What’s outstanding for me in that part is the really dynamic hi-hat play on the drums that loosens up the otherwise comparatively stiff composition of this album.

Following that we have the second longest track on the album All Tongues Toward which was also the first song to be released off of this album. What really got me about this track is the “breakthrough” moment that bridges the gap between the intro and the actual song. The intro has military drums against a vocal sample that is layered over faint guitar riffs and Wrest just breaks that intro with a scream and overwhelming, kind of ethereal sounding guitars that really feel kind of uplifting.

The last song on this album is called Aphonos and also sounds a bit doomier, even though it doesn’t quite reach Scar Sighted in that regard. Aphonos poses a really dramatic ending to this album with the familiar distant, pained and distorted screams surrounded by lots of ambient sounds and really dark, hopeless layered guitarriffs.

Overall, Leviathan’s sound hasn’t changed too much, which isn’t necessarily a bad thing. I just felt like the first half of this album was less inspired and had a lot less moments, as I like to call them, than the second half, which was really more enjoyable for me.   

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