Yermo. Essentially the work of one man (Madrileño David Muñoz, most often seen keyboarding for Arwen and/or Sun of the Dying), this is a project that’s absolutely vast in ambition. So vast, in fact, that it renders something as prosaic as an ‘album review’ pretty redundant if the person writing that review doesn’t quite possess the oceanic levels of talent present on this recording in their own fingers, currently twitching nervously above the keyboard as majestic opening track Cencellada comes to a finish.

Yermo – this album and the brain that birthed it –  seeks to stand in the presence of greatness. Names like Byron, Machado and Delibes are bandied about in the record’s accompanying press release; And whilst it’s easy to see Byron as a member of, say, latter day My Dying Bride, it’s harder to see him associating himself with something like second track Cuando Eramos Esclavos

That’s not a criticism, however, because said track is splendid and there’s no point aiming low when it comes to influences. But it’s perhaps better to abandon the wittering of others and approach this album from a personal point of view – see if you can make a connection with Muñoz yourself at a personal level. Which, once again, kinda renders this review pointless…

That’s not difficult, by the way – even if you don’t know who Antonio Machado was. Because the music here, which veers from occasional sprints through black metal territory through to bucolic, folk-tinged reverie and back again – hits the listener at a gut level early and doesn’t let go. The album’s centrepiece, the stately epic El Peso del Sol, is massive in every respect and certainly gets close to being worth the price of admission on it’s own as it mixes proggy lead guitar, dreamy synths and massed ranks of choristers in beautiful style. The following track, Un Mar de Polvo, is positively uplifting, and again features some goosebump-inducing lead guitar.

Albums like Yermo don’t come around too often, so when they do they should be cherished. And it’s very easy to cherish Yermo!

Yermo is out now.