Hailing from the birthplace of heavy metal, Birmingham, England, Esoteric was founded in 1992 by Greg Chandler (vocals/guitar) and Gordon Bicknell (guitar/samples/keyboards), their intentions being to set their moniker to music by way of dark, drawn-out, tormented, but also cinematic extreme death/doom. And, after filling their ranks with a voluble group of henchmen, their ensuing double albums, 1994's Epistemological Despondency and 1997's The Pernicious Enigma did just that, giving new meaning to the genre by consisting of but six or seven protracted songs each. By comparison, 1999's single-disc Metamorphogenesis (incremented with spikes of feedback and modern acid rock) was looked upon as a mini-album, and preceded a long hiatus during which Chandler, Bicknell, and then current members Steve Peters (guitar), Trevor Lines (bass), and Keith York (drums) would convene only at distant intervals to work on a fourth album. The wait, ironically enough, only helped fuel Esoteric's growing cult following, and when it finally emerged through Season of Mist in 2004, the four-track Subconscious Dissolution into the Continuum proved their most successful and -- if that's possible -- accessible effort yet.
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