The jaw-dropping debut album by this French band. Hailing from Grenoble, Barus formed in 2015 and soon released their self-titled debut EP through Emanations (a division of Les Acteurs de l´Ombre Productions). Since mid-2016, work has been focused on their debut full-length album. Bearing the ominous title "Drowned", this is a bolt-from-the-blue work of unimaginable vision and towering might. Indeed, the term "?????" evokes a weight, an overbearing burden. Through Barus, this takes musical form through a complex and utterly atmospheric -but, above all, completely and totally visceral- approach to Death Metal. Call it an alchemy of sorts, but "Drowned" presents a moltenly monolithic, ceaselessly churning sound merged with palpably progressive structures, frequently stretching into Black and Doom Metal territories -and effortlessly, at that- all compellingly completed by bowels-of-Hell deep vociferations and vocalizations spanning semi-clean moans, spoken word, chants and everything in between. Truly, it´s a nightmare made flesh, its dissonance instilling an unshakable tension and terror, and yet Barus manage to make it sound so alluring, so tempting, to literally drown in the enormity they lay bare for the helpless listener. Drowned indeed! We don´t usually dip our toes into "progressive" or "post" waters, favoring the musty odor of vintage Death Metal. However, when presented with Barus´ "Drowned", we couldn´t help but submit to their visionary onslaught on the senses. So, while we could describe them as "Autopsy reinterpreted by Meshuggah" or "Gojira and Gorguts jamming out to an old Demilich tune with Ulcerate´s instruments," we´re confident Barus should definitely appeal to fans of such daring bands as Gorguts, Triptykon, Ulcerate, Emptiness, Meshuggah, Portal, Diskord, Akercocke, Gojira, Sumac, Deathspell Omega, Altars and Chaos Echoes. Featuring 9 songs in a vast yet time-evaporating 56 minutes, the production on "Drowned" is absolutely stellar. It was recorded between 2016 and 2017 at Plastic Lobster Studios & Eptagon, with drum recording and additional reamping done at Octavox Studio, while mixing and mastering were done by James Leonard at Plastic Lobster Studios. Completed by cover art courtesy of the masterful Timo Ketola, with inner artwork by Stephen Wilson, Barus´ "Drowned" is this year´s dark-horse classic in the making!