Wednesday, 16 February 2011

Stained Glass Revelations

Negative Plane have crafted one of the best black metal albums of the last ten years and presented it to the unsuspected masses in the form of their debut Et In Saecula Saeculorum. Their logo might incorporate almost every cliche of the black metal universe (pentagram, goathead, skulls, 666), yet this is a rare case where this shouldn't bother at the least, as their music is anything but cliched. The fact that many where those that easily and superficialy named their music avant garde or progressive or experimental is one more evidence of the metal world's stupidity and luck of basic musical 'education'. In that sense, anything that is black metal but does not resemble the old scandinavian 'necro' sound should be progressive or avant garde. In fact Negative Plane have made the simplest of things. They have taken the lessons taught by all the greats of dark extreme music and made them their own shaping a personality that is unique and in the shallow microcosm of today's black metal this uniqueness is being magnified.

Their second spell has been in preparations for five years and by listening to Stained Glass Revelations, that is evident. There isn't a single part of the new record that is not an improvement compared to the debut. Cavernous, chaotic but above all outright EVIL. The legacy of three decades of occult metal finds it's worthy beneficiaries. Mercyful Fate, Bathory, Celtic Frost, Mortuary Drape, Samael, early Mayhem, early your successors. 

Most of all, the band honours the dark traditions with the passion and feeling they inject to their work. Belief and feeling is all that is needed for the greatest black metal and Negative Plane have those in amounts to spare for all the talentless flock that plagues the black metal scene. In the general frame of black metal Negative Plane would be categorised as orthodox bm. But if you expect to hear choirs, psalms and suchlike you lost. In Negative Plane's world there is no room for cheap tricks and trends. Their music is a religious experience by itself, the whole record is a liturgy, a mindfuck that shapes the listener's/participant's mind and soul the way the band wishes. There is no other black metal band today that evokes the occult and gothic horror the way Negative Plane does. Bear in mind that before the term gothic (in music) degenerated to describe the gay/eyeliner parody it does today, it was used for such great bands as Bauhaus or Fields of the Nephilim. Stained Glass Revelations invokes the occult magnificence of Fields of the Nephilim or Garden of Delight at their best although there are no obvious similarities in sound. 

This is the best exploration of the abyss one could hope for. Those that can feel the real darkness have found their haven. They will explore every detail of the music, they will study every aspect of the spectacular artwork, they will do justice to such a magnificent record.  More words would seem to be a disgrace for a work of such proportions. Bow down in respect.     

Burzum - Fallen
The Dead Brothers - 5th Sin-Phonie
The Beast Of The Apocalypse - Henosis
Mirror Of Deception & Garden Of Worm split
Dødsengel - Dødsengel
Hexvessel - Dawnbearer
Ättestupa - Begraven Mot Norr