Album Review: Echtra – BardO (Temple of Torturous)

Olympia, WA based drone/doom/black metal project, Echtra, will be releasing a new record titled BardO, on November 23rd via Temple of Torturous. The release features two 23 minute tracks and connects with listeners on a transcendent level, allowing for a cathartic experience. The record will be released with an accompanying DVD featuring a live performance of the music.

Echtra’s “BardO” is the second instalment of the Passage Cycle, a tripartite exploration of the transmission of one’s essence between lifetimes; this 2nd Chapter focuses on the interstitial space between death and rebirth. Inspired by the Vajrayana’s experiential identification of this liminal sphere as the place of reckoning, a phantasmagoria facilitative of the full ripening of one’s karmic imprints, Echtra crafts an aural ode to the soul’s journey through the in-between.

BardO 2

While we’re not new to drone/doom/black metal here at Games, Brrraaains & A Head-Banging Life it has to be said that Echtra are a very unique listen. One that needs time to really appreciate what they are offering here.

BardO requires patience and an open mind. It requires your full attention and for you to absorb yourself in it. Even describing it can’t be done in a typical way, like trying to describe the setting sun to someone who has never seen it before.

The two tracks that make up BardO are moving and emotionally captivating, lightness mixed with darkness to create an aura that is freeing. In the sense that you drift along with the droning sounds and are swept up by the melodies.

Both tracks are exactly 23 minutes long but do throw up some surprising variety in how they sound. BardO II in particular deals out a harsher edge that threatens to really open up but holds back just enough to leave you wanting more.

Echtra can take you to the high and low with ease on this release and the suggestion from us is to sit in a dark room with nothing but a pair of headphones on letting BardO wash over you. It’s unique and very spectacular.

BardO 1

Echtra – BardO Full Track Listing:

1. BardO I
2. BardO II



This release includes a 12″ LP with specific analogue mastering, plus a DVD disc containing the original live performance with digitally mastered audio track. You can order the album over via Temple of Torturous.

Echtra - BardO (Temple of Torturous)
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