There are some music sub-genres which are not easy to review. Ambient/Drone releases are a good example. Due to its minimalist nature and structure, analyzing something which sometimes doesn’t seem to have a real beginning nor end is a troublesome challenge. Still, anyone can listen to this kind of music, enjoy some and dislike others.
This is one of the “good” cases. Introducing Shelther, a one-man Ambient Drone project by Tony (real name Antoine Matthys). Known for his work as a drummer for the band Lethvm (check out their great debut album “This Fall Shall Cease”, by the way!), Antoine surprises everyone with a completely different musical approach. Many musicians who are not drummers tend to get this naive thought that drummers cannot compose music by themselves. As a drummer myself, I can affirm that it is a very wrong assumption to make.
“When Comes The Flee” is a one-song EP that lasts for a good 36 minutes. “Good” because it succeeds in dragging the listener to another place. Somewhere desolate, yet peaceful. Music-wise Shelther is pretty much guitar-driven. It starts nice and slow, taking its time to build the right atmosphere as guitar melodies are layered on top of each other creating a wall of sound which, in spite of, being encompassing, does not feel claustrophobic.
This long song has three different “moments”, separated by droning sounds with no guitars. Also, there aren’t any drums nor vocals. And there is no need for them here. Beautiful melodies echo and make you numb. This is very personal-feeling music. It’s not something you would enjoy in group, no. This is something you enjoy by yourself, in your own introspective journey.
In conclusion, “When Comes The Flee” is a beautiful piece of music, which could be Doom metal if it had vocals and drums, but is perfect as it is: an encompassing experience generated by sound. You don’t even feel the time passing by, and all of sudden, it ends. It is a great debut release.