Wednesday, 3 February 2010

Time and Satan

It seems that the new Abigor album was the most anticipated one in the underground circles for the last few months. Now that it is upon us, can it survive the hype that was created?
Time Is the Sulphur in the Veins of the Saint... is the logical step following the magnificent Fractal Possession. The present incarnation of the band is singlehandedly the most interesting and fertile one. Thankfully the band is not out of inspiration after the previous album. On the contrary the ideas presented here, in these two tracks, would be enough to fill three or four albums. The guitars continue their dissonant journey in multiple layers while the bass is ever dominant. What stole my attention though is the excellent vocal performance. It has to be heard thoroughly to be believed. This Arthur Rosar guy seems to be a really interesting case. I would like to see the reaction of the 'trve black metal kiddies' (ha) when they find out his other band, the excellent Walser.
All in all the record is essential for everyone that wishes to see the future of black metal shaping in front of his eyes. A complete masterpiece of modern art, that crowns Abigor's career so far.
The lyrical content follows closely the quality of music. Basically an essay on Time based on a phrase of Albert Einstein, it is linked with Blacklodge's album.
T/ME, is the french band's contribution to this combined work. The things that characterize Blacklodge are all there. Harsh and extreme electronics, electro rhythms, satanic devotion. Maybe this is not the best work I've heard from them but it is a worthy addition to their discography.
The two albums can perfectly stand on their own, but personally I found the experience much more rewarding when listening to them as parts of the same combined work they really are.


On more 'conservative' grounds, Dødsengel's second album Mirium Occultum is the other release that enchanted me recently. Norway may well have showed the basics for the black metal sound that is the most dominant in the scene, but as far as the philosophical background goes, there has always been a huge void. The first bands of the 'second wave' had their mandatory excercise in juvenile 'Satanism' blended with detailed references to the weather condition of the north (as if anyone should care). Then the hilarious viking thing came to the front. Anyway, a norwegian band that has the talent to write and perform inspired black metal AND at the same time back it up with a philosophical or theosophical view that matters, is not the most common of cases. This is a gap filled by Dødsengel. I quite liked their debut Visionary but after listening to it 6 or 7 times it got lost in the pile of cds. For the sake of comparison I will say that I heard the new record 5 times in a row after the first encounter I had with that beast. This is a perfect example of a band that sticks to the known norms of black metal, yet the flame that burns inside them acts as an infinite source of inspiration. Ritualistic, cruel when needed, slow and painful at other times, this is the best norwegian black metal I've heard in ages. What's for sure is that this record will not leave my player for a long time.