Another review of “When Only Shades Remain” written by Philippe Blache is now available on the Igloo Magazine website:
Hall of Mirrors is a collaborative side project headed by two pioneering actors of the Italian dark ambient scene: Andrea Marutti (alias Amon, Never Known) and Giuseppe Verticchio (alias Nimh, Twist of Fate). After several years of silence the duo is back, this time on Eibon Records (also responsible of the publication of many Marutti’s albums under his various monikers). If we currently place labels such as Malignant, Cold Spring, Cold Meat Industry as major figures in the rise and development of dark ambient music we should not forget the historical importance of Eibon Records, precisely in Italy. Among the most notorious acts released by this label we can notice Amon, Blood Box and Caul regarding isolationist and darkly chilling ambient music based on layered drones and languid otherwordly textures. ‘When Only Shades Remain’ reveals delicately creepy soundscaping atmospheres which seem to be closer to the first effort published by the duet (Reflections On Black), more distant to the blackened electronic drone inferno of ‘Altered Nights’ or the more sacred sound ritualism of ‘Forgotten Realm’. Consequently eerily fixated drones meet more calming, melancholic, reverberant detached guitar patterns, bordering a sea of vast quietness and deeper thoughtfulness. ‘When Only Shades Remain’ is one emotional story, beautifully sculpted and which alternates heavily wistful sequences with more melodious themes. Those enveloping tones, subtle echoing guitar lines, and lysergic drone passages evoke forgotten times, antique derelicts and mind travel. This is one tremendous effort with a few majestic heavenly moments (as in ‘Beyond the Ever Changing Horizon’). Recommended to any passionate followers of dark ambient music and striking sonic worlds.