“A truly sublime and majestic sound; an egress of emotions... The mind traverses many places and memories whilst it listens. A feasting of beauty and disgust - a perfect balance of expression.
“Dark serenity...dark beauty and dark art...Ashtorath mixes metal, ambient, gothic, classical music into a sad universal tale, told only by the voice of a single guitar. Remarkable that just one instrument (and the hands and mind of its master) can create such a wide variety of music, from utter grimness and desolation to angelic soft sounds, but always the darkness is present, lingering through each song to remind the listener that the roots of Ashtorath lie deep in the unexplored depths of time and space...
“I have had two albums by Ashtorath to review for a couple of weeks now, and still I don’t know what to say.
This is not just music, this is art, this is beauty, this is poetry! Ashtorath is all down to one man, musical genius Despairialindrid.
This is definitely not going to be to everyone’s liking and will take a lot of listening to. It may or may not click, but when the blend of metal, ambient, gothic, classical music does, you’ll understand the sheer beauty and effort. Ashtorath isn’t just another band; it’s a cult, a following. Truly amazing.”
— ---Metal Mayhem
“Ashtorath - Darkstorm Entwined.
Unheard of and celebrated only by underground dark ambient fans, Ashtorath is a unique ambient project coming out of Canada. While most ambient artists, at the time this album was recorded, used synthesizers and various technical editing to achieve an ambiental atmosphere, Ashtorath focused on physical instrumentation and thereby actively engaged with the music itself to form a coherent listening experience. With delicate and noble emotion, Ashtorath set out to form a concept of classical music meeting metal.
Ethereal and magical is the atmosphere found in these dark and romantic pieces that explore the romanticist side of life. Hanging ambiental key tones flow between high and low points, switching from far away to close distance, serving as leading melodies to inflict an emotional mood upon its own basic structure. The rasping sound of a nail shaking a guitar string with ease fill the sometimes wondrous void, (continued)”
“The new guitar techiques found on "Darkstorm Entwined" were, at the time of the creation of this album, new and inspiring for numerous underground ambient and metal projects to come. As felt and heard when the finger rides on a string after a note within a larger melody is being played, these techniques are used to the advantage of the artist and turned into melodies themselves, voices of birds from afar.
The sound of icicles meeting, thunderstorms roaring and strings played upon by a creature unhuman, unknown, are but few of the ways in which Ashtorath keeps the overall mood going. This gothic monument is as ethereal as it is enchanting and moving; there is no lack of emotion and dedication to art in this album. Competent, but not the least, true to itself and its creation, the words trying to express the poetry found within each statement are mere attempts to reach the height of abstraction felt and lived by the music and creator. (continued)”
“as a communicator of magical worlds and immersive myths and legends.
Because this is what Ashtorath is a master at; creating magical moods and the ability to set the listener into a distant world where time is an illusion and romanticism is reality. The beauty stems not only from the harmonies between ambient and metal, but also from the spirit of classical music that arises within each piece. The collaboration between the distant, fading sounds of guitar strings, blowing wind and soft church bells define each moment as special and unique, drenched in darkness.
If one could use the word "art", one would apply it to "Darkstorm Entwined", and that rightly so. The influences from classical music is at most times benevolent and real, and gives the music a clear vision of what it tries to present. Lively but ambiguous, this music works at both an emotional and philosophical level; there are no restrictions regarding the expression of the music itself, only endless possibilities.(continued)”
“When day turns to night and time passes, there will be nothing left but the echoes of a dimension beyond this one, upholding experiences that transcend physical reality.