It’s a true pleasure to bring you a full stream of Nocel by the Polish black metal band Furia. The album was released last fall on CD by Pagan Records, and on March 6 the label will be releasing the album on double-gatefold-vinyl. It deserves that kind of treatment — in a word, Nocel is fascinating.
Furia’s name means “fury” in English, but the music on Nocel is not so easily summed up. “Fury” is only one of many moods expressed in this impressively creative and highly variable work. Over its hour-long course, Furia vividly convey alternating moods of wild freedom, slashing anger, cold isolation, hunger, meditative tranquility, and even despair. It’s so full of contrasts and surprises that it will remind listeners of the avant-garde exuberance of bands like Deathspell Omega rather than the warlike savagery of a group like Marduk.
The fiery vocal performance of the band’s mastermind Nihil is strikingly impressive, and almost as variable as the music, ranging from abrasive mid-ranged howls to deep roars to dramatic spoken words, and even a bit of clean singing. But Nocel is really more of an instrumental work, taken as a whole, and the guitar performance is especially brilliant.
The album does have moments of strafing and blasting, but the guitar work is more often intricate and inspirational, and even within each individual song there is movement and contrast. At times the songs sound like whirling dances, at times like gallops through darkened woods, and at other times like sweeping post-metal panoramas. There are moments of quiet, when solo guitar arpeggios echo like the voice of a desolate soul in the desert, and moments when the chords ring out like the peal of bells.
Sometimes the melodies sound folk-influenced, at other times you get a bounding, pounding piece of blackened rock ‘n’ roll. The music is by turns deeply atmospheric and entrancing, and off to the races with the wind in your face.
The striking and wholly immersive centerpiece of the album is the thirteen-minute song named “Niezwykła nieludzka nieprzyzwoitość”. It encapsulates all the qualities that make Nocel such a brash and remarkable achievement. It includes slow, plaintive, isolated notes; hard-charging gallops; passages of dark, wintry melody; periods of meditative tranquillity; clouds of distortion penetrated by twittering electronic sounds; hypnotic bass and drum rhythms; and a swirling post-metal-style instrumental at the end that I didn’t want to end — not to mention a big display of that vocal variety I mentioned earlier.
Speaking of bass and drum rhythms, while the guitar is the star of this music, and the drum and bass performances often seem simple and stripped-down, the performances are precise and they play a vital role in swinging the music through its highly variable paces.
To repeat, this really is a fascinating album that won’t grow old quickly. It’s the kind of album that will give you something new each time you hear it, and if you’re like me, you’ll want to hear it a lot. Enjoy our stream below.
Somewhen before the album’s release I emailed you about Furia and I was a bit disappointed that they didn’t get the spotlight, but eh, I guess a good album will never go unnoticed in the end.
By the way, I recommend checking out other bands that have the Nihil in them: Morowe, Massemord, and also two side-projects: FDS and Seagulls Insane and Swans Deceased Mining Out the Void (one hell of a name).
I really should have followed up on the recommendation last year — I also got one from “blend77” — and I saw Nocel showing up on several year-end reader lists for 2014, too. But I still didn’t investigate as I should have. Better late than never! And now I have more names from you — I hope I can do better this time. 🙂
THIS ALBUMS AMAZING! 😛
Since learning of this band Ive since discovered that their album two previous, Grudzien, is even better.
I now consider it a near perfect album and one of the all time greats.
Their first album is stellar too, but the one between Nocel and Grudzien hasnt grabbed me as much.
I’ll vouch for Massemord too, since its a lot of the same guys, but Furia really brings the creativity to a boil with those three records of theirs.
Glad to see you finally got around to enjoying it Islander!!
I’m an immediate fan based on Nocel. Hard for me to imagine that they’ve done another one that’s better, but you can be damned sure that I’ll check out Grudzien based on what you’ve written. Thanks!
Im just blowing smoke. ie. to each their own, but I was extremely impressed with Nocel and was quite surprised by Grudzien. Its very much in the same wheelhouse, so whether or not its better youre sure to enjoye the hell out of it
Even Marzannie has a lot going on that needs more listens, but its recorded different and one of the things I love about the other three is the way the instruments sound. So clear and punchy.
I enjoyed the clarity of the production on Nocel, even though I didn’t mention it. I like hyper-distorted murk as much as the next bottom-dweller, but for music this interesting and performances this skilled, I like to hear the nuances of what’s happening.
Whole Furia’s discography is brilliant. My personal fave might be “Martwa Polska Jesień”, although “Nocel” is a strong contender for the title. My judgement is also affected by the lyrics – Nihil is great at writing those. Unfortunately I imagine not even google translate would be good enough to understand most of them as a non-Pole.
By the way, an interesting fact that might help you understand the cover art for “Nocel”. In 2006 in Silesia (where Furia hails from), a trade hall collapsed, burying 700 people inside, 65 people died. It was one of the worst disasters ever in Poland. The cover art is a photo of what’s left of the hall nowadays. Only the pillars remain, a sinister reminder of that tragedy.
“Nigdy i nigdzie” (Never & Nowhere)
And monstrous ever-night became,
with funeral dance (they) entertain us,
don’t go back.
I will chase after You,
but never-nowhere I will find You.
“Beze mnie” (Without me)
so within me
“Ogromna noc” (Tremendous Night)
so light torches from heads
in darkness of tremendous night
let’s chop pavements,
And raging with dance,
tear out bonds,
into darkness cognizant,
into the night,
towards, into the night!
“Niezwykła Nieludzka Nieprzyzwoitość” (Extraordinary Inhuman Indecency)
Led, twisting path
straight to goal,
where no one ever was,
spill-over burden of
flood the world,
sing the world
cross the borders,
conquer our wisdom,
order of things,
then be solid
sink the world
and go quiet softly
for a moment,
let it flood
let it pour
It is the only power,
blood and sweat,
solace and torment,
endless circle –
(So that’s my simple and straight translations, not very poetic, but I think its better than google’s “Friday Man’s” computer translations).
*sink the world, of course not sing 😉
Thank you for doing this!
Let the World Burn…
love this album, cant get enough listens..
Furia sounds like Primordial + Nachtmystium, with a scent of Drudkh.
Well, listening to this album has certainly improved my mood before I go to work! Thanks for alerting me to this. Between this site, AMG and Black Metal Updates on youtube, I’m getting exposed to a ton of great new metal (but not nu-metal!)