Astral where a 1 man band from the Netherlands that played a very atmospheric form of occult black metal and this is a review of their 1993 "We The Unclean Shall Flourish" and 94's "The Celestial Nightmare" demo's which where re-issued as a compilation album.
Drums range from slow, mid paced to fast drumming with some blast beats being thrown into the music at times as well as some tribal ritualistic parts, while the keyboards bring a very dark, avant garde, occult, and atmospheric sound to the recording, as for the bass playing it has a very strong and powerful sound with heavy and primitive black metal riffing that dominates throughout the recording and there are no regular electic guitar's present on the recording.
Acoustic guitars which are only used on the second demo for most of the recording use finger picking and full chords to add some more ritualistic, dark and avant garde, occult sounds to the recording and are a powerful instrument on the second demo.
Vocals range from grim sounding black metal screams, deep demonic growls, whispers, ritualistic chanting, and spoken word samples as well as a brief use of choirs being utilized on the last song, while the lyrics cover Satanism, Vampirism, Left Hand Path, and Astrology themes with one song being written in German, as for the production it has a very dark, raw and primitive sound with most of the songs being very long and epic in length.
In my opinion Astral where a very great sounding avant garde, atmospheric occult black metal band and if you are a fan of this musical genre, you should check out this compilation. RECOMMENDED TRACKS INCLUDE "We The Unclean Shall Flourish" "Glorious Awakening Of The Sleeping Vampire" and "The Astral Gate II". RECOMMENDED BUY.