In the mind-melting song “As Consciousness Is Harnessed To Flesh Part 2“, the Serbian, UK-based solo artist MRTVI tells you “Reality is not to be believed“. And in case you don’t believe him, he also makes a determined effort through this music to fracture reality into a shower of sharp shards and splinters, to plow madly through the constrictive channeling of experience through our perceptions, in search of an inner cosmos.
We premiered this song once before, in advance of the late-July release of Negative Atonal Dissonance, the eye-popping album that barely contains its unpredictable energies. I advised you then, “whatever you do, don’t pass this by”. But some people may not have been paying attention, and so I’m quite happy to provide a reminder. Plus, this time the music is accompanied by a lyric video that’s almost as abrasive, bewildering, and neuron-rearranging as the music. But not quite.
“Form, order, familiarity, repetition — these are among the ingredients that the human mind seems to find most easily digestible and immediately appealing in musical compositions. But sometimes the music that makes the deepest connections with our brains (and our emotions) is unfamiliar, unpredictable, chaotic, iconoclastic.”
I introduced this song in July with those words, and I’ll paraphrase a few more:
Though the song has connections to black metal, it’s also in many ways well off the usual beaten paths. In a word, it’s wild — though part of its fascination lies in the dawning realization that as twisted, bizarre, and experimental as the music is, it achieves a hypnotic effect. It gets its hooks in your head.
The track greets the listener with a battering maelstrom of pummeling bass, hammering and clattering drums, deep abrasive riffs, and incinerating vocals. In some ways the huge bass pulse is the head-moving heart of the song. It comes and goes, along with demented guitar surges. At times, when surrounded by a haze of distortion, it becomes a strange, noodling presence, with the pulse of the song replaced by unnerving shrieking sounds. The music becomes freakishly dissonant and cacophonous, settles into an ambient phase populated by weird Dopplering sounds (like a siren) and exploding drum munitions, and surges again into a maelstrom of braying chords, screaming notes, bursts of sledge-hammering bass, and scattershot snare bursts.
The track includes head-spearing rhythms and strangely enticing melodies. Deep into the song, it sounds like “21st Century Schizoid Man” on steroids, with guitar effects which resemble a saxophone that has developed sentience and then lost its mind. Even deeper into the track, the music seems to die, the rhythm disappearing, the sound falling into a sinkhole of psychotic ambient sounds that become increasingly ear-shattering and discordant. When the drums return, the patterns are unpredictable, erupting through a squall of sound, joined by what sounds like a piano motif, barely loud enough to be heard… which becomes one final hook in the head.
Negative Atonal Dissonance is out now via Transcending Obscurity Records, digitally and in an 8-panel digipak edition (limited to 100 copies).
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