This is the second part of a post I began on Sunday, collecting recent music in a blackened vein that I’ve been enjoying. As is often the case, other obligations derailed my plan to post this on Monday, and of course I found a few more things since then that I also want to recommend.
The truth is, I’m drowning in dark new releases that I want to recommend, many of which (unlike what’s in this post) are full albums and EPs. I’m stewing about how to solve that problem, since reviewing all of them is an impossibility. But let’s put that conundrum aside and dive into some very good videos and advance tracks.
A few days ago the Romanian band Sincarnate released a lyric video for a song called “Curriculum Mortis” from their new album In Nomine Homini, which will be released on April 1 by Hatework. This is one of those full releases I mentioned above — from what I’ve heard so far, it’s excellent, and I hope to find a way to come back to it in print here at our site. But for now, I’m focused on “Curriculum Mortis”.
The song is ominous, doomed, and dismal, shrouded in a looming sense of calamity that spills over into bursts of fury, the vocals roaring from cavernous depths and howling to the heavens in wrenching passion. Deep chords toll like abrasive funeral bells and hammer at a rapid pace; desolate melodies ooze pain and poison; choral voices chant a portion of The Beatitudes in Latin, while the lyrics put a different spin on them. It’s a multifaceted song, an intense one, and a very good one.
In Nomine Homini was produced by Andrei Jumuga, and it was mixed and mastered by Andrei Jumuga, Edmond Karban, and Cristian Popescu at Consonance Studio. The cover art was created by Flaviu Moldovan. Credit for the video goes to Dawning Media TV.
Sincarnate on Facebook:
FAIL·LURE, the title of the new album by the German experimental black metal band Farsot, is a contraction of the words “failure” and “allure”. It’s the band’s third album and it will be released by Prophecy Productions/Lupus Lounge on April 21. Yesterday the band premiered a video for a song from the album named “The Antagonist“.
The song is persistently uneasy and unsettling, even as it moves through changes in tempo, volume, and energy. It creates a growing sense of tension and calamity, unerringly dark and disturbing. Eruptions of physically compulsive drumwork and jagged or swarming riffs get the blood pumping, yet the overarching aura of oppressiveness is unrelenting, thanks in part to the flesh-scarring violence of the vocals and the ominous chants that contribute to the song’s grim ritualistic aspect.
The beautifully conceived and well-executed video is a fine unsettling match for the music, from the pale drowned body at the beginning straight through to the mysterious fireside ritual at the end. It rarely proceeds at a steady speed, usually either in ultra-slow motion or in a blur.
More interesting details from the press release we received:
“FAIL·LURE is conceptually inspired by the critically acclaimed Peter Greenaway film, Drowning by Numbers, which won the award for Best Artistic Contribution at the 1998 Cannes Film Festival, as well as Art Nouveau works such as Khnopff’s “Ishtar”, Klimt’s “Water Serpents”, Kotarbinski’s “Kiss of Medusa” and Schwabe’s “La Vague”. The record’s album art features a sculpture by French artist Denis Lavoyer that depicts a female idealized with threatening, claw-like branches for arms, addressing the inevitable dilemma between fascination and mania and seeming rifts between the sexes; it is an allegory of life as an endless game that cannot be won.”
FAIL·LURE was produced by V. Santura (Triptykon, Secrets Of The Moon). You can pre-order the album here:
Farsot on Facebook:
The next song I’ve chosen for this collection is “Luciferian Black Light” from Black Light of Destruction, the debut album by a black metal band from Uruguay named Opus Diaboli. It will be co-released on May 10 by Satanath Records and The Ritual Productions.
“Luciferian Black Light” is a torrent of blasting drums and seething, viperlike riffs from the very beginning, with ugly, blood-freezing vocals that conjure visions of demons in a fury. When the pace slows to a stalking pace, the song becomes memorably bleak as well as bestial, with melancholy matched to a murderous menace.
Opus Diaboli on Facebook:
Appalling make their home in Richmond, Virginia. Their debut album Secrets of the Adept will be released on May 5, and two songs from the album can now be heard on Bandcamp — “On the Backs of Horses” and the title track, “Secrets of the Adept“. Both are excellent.
That first song is well-named, as long as you understand that these horses are demon steeds flying from the gates of hell, spurred on by the whip hand of chaos. The song does settle into a cantering pace, just to give the band a chance to get your head moving and sprain your necks, and eventually it breaks down into a desolate dirge, with the flesh-eating vocal fusillades turning to desolate wails.
Chaos reigns again at the outset of “Secrets of the Adept”, where a torrent of deranged riffs and pummeling drumwork do their damage immediately. But the song changes, and when it does, it really gets its hooks in the head, swinging and darting in a kind of demonic dance that makes you want to spin around in delirium. (Is that a saxophone bleating in the background?)
Appalling on Facebook:
Motherwood is a new black metal band from Brazil who contacted us last week, providing links to two songs — “Sadness and Coldness”. The two members of the band explain: “The project was born out of their shared knowledge and admiration for the atmosphere/doom/black metal music in the style of early Katatonia, Opeth, Burzum and Emperor“.
“Coldness” is the first of these songs I heard, and I was fascinated by it. It alternates between different states and styles — it rips maniacally in a black frenzy, it soars and glides in mystical ecstasy, it thrashes in a blazing, electrifying torrent, it hammers and jabs in a headbanger’s delight. Throughout all these changes, the vocals are a livid terror. The song may be named “Coldness”, but it’s pure exuberant fire.
“Sadness” does indeed have a depressive melodic air, the vocals expressing agony in extremity, but the song swings and seethes, and it’s intensely seductive. As in “Coldness”, the band also make very effective use of sweeping ambience to give the song a different, ethereal dimension, and in this track they also sink into a deep trough of gloom and encroaching death in the song’s second half before the dance begins again and ultimately carries you away on soaring wings, aided by a beautiful guitar motif and a piano in the finale.
Both songs are very accomplished, a huge and very pleasant surprise. Below I’ve included separate streams of both songs, and a YouTube stream that includes both of them together, beginning with “Sadness”.
Motherwood on Facebook: