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cassette craze chronicles XIII (DOLPO)

Yes, this new issue of my cassette craze chronicles only features one release. I just didn't get any other new tapes since the last time, but I want to share this - and it's awesome enough to stand on its own.

DOLPO - Inner Himalayas (2019/2022)

Previously released in two limited special vinyl editions, "Inner Himalyas" isn't brand new, but it's still pretty obscure for sure. This cassette version comes from the fantastic French/Chinese one-man-label WV Sorcerer Productions, so it's guaranteed to be made with much love.

Dolpo are an Italian band with Tibetian ties, and they are fully embracing this connection. Imagine heavily droning, noisy cosmic doom metal, enriched with tons of authentic Himalayan field recordings and the usage of Tibetian (and other Asian) wind and brass instruments like ding-chen, dung-dkar, kangling, rag-dung, taishogoto and overtone flute, as well as according percussions and occasionally also vocals.

If you're asking for references, from my personal circle of favorites Bong, Bong-Ra and also Bell Witch come to mind for the doom part, while the ambience reminds me of Mong Tong and Saba Alizadeh, whereas thinking of Phurpa feels almost too obvious. But in the end these six tracks are set in such a special sonic and spiritual space, that none of those names speaks the whole truth.

Dolpo have a raw purity about them, which radiates a primal mystic beauty, while still nursing you if you just want that crispy and skull-crushing slow motion doom experience. I may be reaching a little here, since this tape was intended to come out in December, but as it just arrived this week it's safe to say that with a new Mizmor coming soon, this January is already a heavenly month for doom.

The cassette sounds great and comes in a handmade package, wrapped in cloth and cord with a rice paper credits insert and accompanied by a cone of Tibetian ritual incense.

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