Dungeon Synth Digest V

One of my dreams is to become an expert on dungeon synth, or at least talk about it enough that people think of me as an expert. you are here because someone, probably me, has talked enough about this strange little genre that at least enough interest has been piqued for further investigation. This genre was opened to me by the work of Erang and has led me into a magical world of fantastical ambient music and obsessed musicians who create worlds with sound and imagination. There are few musicians attached to this genre, and perhaps even fewer listeners, but I call this little hamlet home. I know some others do as well and everyday it seems that this small genre grows a little bit each day. It probably will never reach a point when dungeon synth is fully recognized but for its denizens who create and enjoy the modest material available means the world. Enjoy your stay here in my little cottage and please have some tea and while you sit by the fire.

Oh goodness, this is wonderful. Cernunnos Woods has been gone from this world for around 20 years, with the last “release” Awaken The Empire Of Dark Wood in 1996. I do not think anyone knew about Cernunnos Woods in 1996 and most certainly not within the context of dungeon synth. Tears of the Weeping Willow is a short EP and I do mean short. At just under 9 minutes these three tracks represent work made in 1994 that has been remastered in 2015. When I say remastered, I mean the quality of these recordings is still hilariously lo fi with the creeping vocals of the creator narrating over thin synth atmosphere. The mystery of Cernunnos Woods certainly adds to the allure, with the promise of more material in the future. I am ready.

Edoras is a brazilian based dungeon synth project that recently has released two records, both dedicated to the lore of Tolkien. While this does not seem like a large leap in terms of thematic inspiration, Edoras does have a unique spin to the style as the entirety of both records crawl at the pace of a very slow drone. At times, the music of Edoras is merely atmospheric rumblings with songs like “the Plateaus of Gorgoroth” being filled with wind sweeps over rocky passages and “Mordor” being almost formless in its structure. The first album, Land of Shadows, is thematically darker and slower than the second album, Doors of Moria, but both of them have an innate sensibility and are drawn to people who have found themselves this far down the dungeon synth hole.

There is little one can do but smile at The Tale of Axe Torch. While dungeon synth shrouds itself in escapism and mystery, there are, of course, other approaches — one being complete transparency and rabid fandom,. RævJäger is a Russian musician who has thrown himself lovingly into the arms of dungeon synth, drawing inspiration from other contemporary dungeon synth musicians such as Erang. RævJäger does not keep his excitement in check as he breaks the veil of immersion with references to Magic the Gathering, roleplaying dice, and a hodgepodge of general fantasy tropes. With all of that said, The Tale of Axe Torch is incredibly endearing because of the excitement that is bursting from its seams. What RævJäger does is remind the few of us who are listening of the same type of giddiness that brought all of 20 of us here in the first place.

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