Like most of you I’m curious and enjoy learning. It’s fair to say that a lot of metal bands and their music and lyrics don’t trigger curiosity or create learning experiences, even when their songs are very good. But when that happens, it’s a welcome bonus, and that happened in the case of the song and video premiere we’re presenting here.
The band whose music is the subject of the premiere are in Peru. Their name is Runa. Curious about the name, I did a little research and learned that “runa” is a name that speakers of the Quechua language (which originated in Peru but is found in many dialects throughout other South American countries) use to refer to themselves. According to this article, the word translates to “person”, but when Quechua speakers call themselves Runa, it means “the people”. I also learned that up to the present time Quechuas continue to be victims of political conflicts and ethnic persecution.
Runa (the band) draw upon ancestral culture in the creation of their music. Their new record, which will be released by the Peruvian label Guts ‘N’ Blood Records and follows by five years a debut EP named Bullets Of Annihilation, is titled Entrance To The Ancestral Wisdom. But, as the band’s vocalist/guitarist Alex explains, Runa’s mystical themes are also “immersed in magic, quantum, and alchemy”. The music through which they express these themes embraces the early raw power of death metal and the acidic viciousness of black metal.
The song we’re premiering today through an official video — the first track to be revealed from the new full-length record — is “Night of Initiation“. The haunting sounds of conch flutes, which open the song, do make it seem like an initiation into ancient mysteries — and the darkness of the rite comes through in ominous chords and ritual drums. The music slowly flares and then explodes in a frenzy of savage riffing and hammering drums. Runa turn the heat up even higher as the drums blast, the razoring guitars become even more unhinged, and the vocalist roars and howls in a fury. It’s an exhilarating but frightening experience.
The black-magic guitar solo that follows is equally exhilarating — it spirals, shrieks, and vibrates with uncanny abandon. And the music then becomes a kind of glorious, blood-rushing exultation, an electrifying torrent of feral, black/thrashing chaos driven by jet-speed riffing, obliterating drum assaults, bullet-spitting vocal hostility, and bursts of brazen melody.
It’s a hell of a good song, and should open a lot of eyes to the enticing prospect of this debut album. The video, which includes a chance to se the band in action, makes for a good companion to the music as well.
Entrance To The Ancestral Wisdom was recorded, mixed, and mastered at HDP Studios (Lima, Peru) by Giovanni Lama, with percussive engineering by Diego Porturas. The cover art was created by Alan Corpse, with additional CD layouts and design by Edu. John Karma gets credit for the logo concept.
Guts ‘n’ Blood Records will release the album on July 10, both digitally and in a CD digipack edition limited to 200 copies.
GUTS AND BLOOD RECORDS: