SEEN AND HEARD: ENTHRONED, PRIMORDIAL, TERRA TENEBROSA, THE WAGAKKI BAND
I have a lot of new discoveries from the preceding 24 hours that I want to share with you today in between the two premieres we have scheduled. I’ve divided them into two of these “Seen and Heard” posts. In this first one I tried to mix things up. Some of what’s here isn’t metal, but it’s all good.
As I previously reported in these pages, Agonia Records will be releasing the 10th studio album by Belgium’s Enthroned on April 15. The title is Sovereigns, and it’s now available for pre-order at this location. Earlier, I featured the first advance track from the album (“Of Feathers and Flames”), and today Noisey premiered another one — “Of Shrines and Sovereigns”. This one is ravaging and rapacious, but it also includes a somber interlude, something similar to Gregorian chant that transforms into a black metal processional, and it really makes the song.
Enthroned’s Facebook page can be accessed through this link. Here’s the new track:
As I also previously reported, on May 27 in NorthAm (and May 23 in Euope) Season of Mist plans to release a special compilation entitled One And All, Together, For Home. The project was initiated by Drudkh’s main man Roman Sayenko and it will consist of songs by these eight excellent bands performing renditions of traditional folk songs from their own countries, most of them using acoustic instruments:
AVA INFERI (Portugal)
Today Metal Hammer premiered the Primordial track. It’s a rendition of Liam Weldon’s folk song “Dark Horse On the Wind”. The droning, dismal drift of strings, and eventually a distant drum roll, provide the backing for Nemtheanga’s heartfelt vocals, which are both tortured and defiant. It’s an exclusive stream, so you’ll need to go HERE to listen — and you really should. The album can be pre-ordered at this location.
Sweden’s Terra Tenebrosa has released two unusual and very good albums since it came into existence — The Tunnels (2011) and The Purging (2013). Now Apocaplexy Records will be releasing a two-track vinyl recording named V.I.T.R.I.O.L. on April 10. It is described as “the transformation of the main figure behind Terra Tenebrosa, The Cuckoo, from the albums The Tunnels to The Purging.” The A-side track, “Draining the Well”, was apparently recorded during the sessions that produced The Purging, and it’s nearly 18 minutes long.
The B-side song is “Apokatastasis”, and that one went up today on SoundCloud. It was apparently made during The Tunnels recording sessions. I really like it. Undergirded by a persistent foot-tapping rhythm, it ebbs and flows in a shroud of harsh noise, with slow-moving chord progressions and a crowd of strange, deranged vocals. Though feeling somewhat foggy and haunted by the end, my head continued bobbing for a few more minutes.
THE WAGAKKI BAND
I’ve written about The Wagakki Band twice previously, most recently in February when I discovered a new video for the song “Senbon Zakura” from a forthcoming album. Today, my Tokyo-based pal Phro alerted me to another new video. Unlike the others I’ve posted, this one is a live performance, professionally filmed. The song is called “Kagero Days”. I now really want to go to one of their shows. It’s a wish that will likely remain unfulfilled, since jetting to Japan isn’t something I do on a whim. Maybe they’ll come to the U.S. someday?
Here’s what Phro had to say about the song’s Japanese lyrics on his post at PhroMetal:
And if you care, “kagero days ” sort of refers to hot/hazy days. I suppose you could think of the “dog days of summer,” but I’m not entirely sure what “dog days” are. Also, according to the dictionary, the “kagero” is actually in spring anyway and refers to “the phenomenon of hot air rising from the ground like flickering flames on calm days with beautiful weather. When strong sunlight heats the ground, and air currents rise in a disorderly way causing various densities of air to mix, which results in sunlight refracting as it passes through.” Or, as one Japanese-English dictionary defined it, “the shimmering of hot air,” which is a beautiful and needlessly poetic way to say “mirage.”
But I like needlessly poetic, so let’s stick with that, eh?
Phro also updated his original post to provide this explanation of the lyrics:
Also, I don’t know why I didn’t do this before, but the song lyrics are…weird. Like, 14-year-old emo kid on acid painting with her own blood weird. Basically, the song is from the perspective of a boy, who’s hanging out with a girl during the summer. The girl’s petting a cat, which runs away and she chases after it and gets hit by a truck. The boy’s like, no, this can’t be real and the kagerou laughs at him. Then he wakes up and it’s the previous day, and he’s glad because she’s not dead. They go to the park again, but this time he’s like, gotta save the girl! So they leave early, but on the way home a giant iron beam falls out of the sky and impales her. (What the fuck, right?) Finally after this repeats for a few decades, he realizes that to save her, he has to die. So he jumps in front of the truck. Then the girl wakes up in bed, again on the previous day, and is like “Shit, I still couldn’t save him.”
That’s one fucked story, eh? Makes for a good song though.
dude that cover is for erebus enthroned not enthroned
Look again. 🙂
The Terra Tenebrosa cover is more or less what I expected to see in the last episode of “True Detective.”
I just wanted to say, that Terra Tenebrosa sound nothing like real “harsh noise”. Their riffs are just fuzzy.
Thank you for your valued input.
I hope this wasn’t meant sarcastically.
It just bothered me, because people nowadays use that term “noise” way too often, while it’s mostly reserved for acts like Prurient, Merzbow, KK Null, and so on. Especially “harsh noise” being an even more specific part of noise, so that I just wanted to point that out, so it wouldn’t mislead other readers. Shouldn’t come off as some hater-comment, because I enjoy following your site.
Just the other day I asked my kids to stop making so much harsh noise, to which they replied “who do you think we are? Merzbow? I guess from now on I’ll have to just ask them to be quiet. Oh wait, is “quiet” a sub-genre now too?
You either don’t know noise-music or are ignorant to the fact that this is a music-blog… Calling something “noise” is okay with me, as long as it’s really just a description and not an actual genre-tag. But when I read “harsh” and “noise” as one, it’s for me more reminiscient of the subgenre of noise-music. It’s like you want to call that one death metal you’re listening to “brutal”, which could easily irritate people, because they assume you mean the subgenre “brutal death metal”.
I doubt anyone but you read the article and thought “harsh noise” was being used as a genre-tag. I am generally a proponent for genre, sub-genre, and sub-sub-genreization, but now I’m starting to think if we stay on this road, there won’t be any descriptive words left to use in a generic sense without someone calling you out for using it.
As for being “ignorant” to “noise” as a genre, I was listing to bands like the Velvet Underground, MC5, Iggy and the Stooges, and Sonic Youth probably before you were born, so get off my lawn.
PS: You would tag The Velvet Ground as “noise”? Okay, that’s just weird…
Without V/U as a precursor, the genre may never have happened.
That may be true for “noise-rock”, but not noise in general. The first real noise-artist was Luigi Russolo and he was active back in the early 20th century, DECADES before TVU.
Formations like “The new Blockaders” are usually named, when speaking about the noise-revival by industrial-movement. Back then and now, it was barely associated with guitar-driven sounds. TVU might have integrated some elements in their rock-sound, but were never influential to modern noise (not the same as noise rock) artists.
Fair point. but when I made the reference to “harsh noise”, I wasn’t intending to use it as a genre reference, just a description of the some of the sounds in the music.
the new Enthroned is sounding excellent! 🙂
Nemtheanga is God.
Yeah, we need to tell that other guy who has been masquerading as God to stop it.