Ur Pale – Water Tombs & Crimson Horizons

I listened to the entirety of Polish outfit Ur Pale’s newest release, Water Tombs & Crimson Horizons/Sea Synth Ensemble on cassette while reading through Michael Moorcock’s first Elric of Melniboné novel, and I couldn’t prescribe a better soundtrack.

The album, courtesy of Dark Age Productions, split between two EPs, is 12 tracks of high-quality modern orchestral dungeon synth, and the gorgeous cover art to both releases is catered to by a reversible insert, aiding the aesthetic of the most gorgeous tape in my collection. Ur Pale knew what they were doing, identifying the record with loud, soft art that sticks out like a glowing gem in a gloomy sea of monochrome dungeon synth releases. That being said, some of the tracks are of a high enough gloss to where they’re almost “too good” to be called dungeon synth, but the ethereal sighs of another realm remain present.

While I do believe Water Tombs & Crimson Horizons is a little more intense, while Sea Synth Ensemble is a bit more serene, both sides are epic, in the now archaic sense of the word. For the courts of Melniboné, and whoever else may meditate and sail on the Seas of Fate, the dual record site in contemplative righteousness.