Inspired by the true story of a criminally neglected child left living in squalor, Rasalhague’s isolationist dark ambient work, Rage Inside the Window, takes its listener down into snarling, oppressive and despair-choked spaces. This disc puts its hand on your throat from the start and forces you to stare into its unpleasant subject matter. There’s a dense piling-on of grim emotion that soaks through every track. Even if you weren’t aware of the origin of the music, the fear, hatred and raw anger would still make themselves known. Places where the thickness of the music scales back feel like the respite between bouts of sobbing, that point where you’re sure you can’t hurt or cry or mourn anymore–and then you do, and worse. The beauty of it, for lack of a better word, is that Rage never totally alienates. Rasalhague wants you there, wants you to be in that space, wants you to see and understand it, and to do so modulates the darkness quite skillfully. He knows there’s a line to cross and he manages to skirt it perfectly. There are times when you won’t want to keep going–I would suggest you’ll hit it in the closing moments of “Mother Is the Disaster”–but you will. This is compelling dark ambient that moves through its story in a completely realized arc, to the point of lightening and opening the tone just slightly in the closing track, “Taming the Feral Child.” If you listen to Rage Inside the Window once, you may not necessarily want to go back through it. However, having heard it you will not easily shake its effects on your soul.
Available from Malignant Records.