For the third day in a row we’re helping spread the word about a new album whose release is fast approaching from the wonderful I, Voidhanger Records. We’ve previously had the pleasure of putting our spotlight on new albums by Acausal Intrusion (U.S.) and Voak (Greece), and today we’re fixated on All-Consuming Hunger, the bombshell debut album by Toronto’s Hussar. I, Voidhanger introduces it this way:
“The effect on the listener’s eardrums is that of a tank that proceeds inexorably breaking through everything it encounters. The metaphor is not out of place, given that in All-Consuming Hunger HUSSAR tell stories of war, denouncing its inhumanity and horrors, the sacrifice of soldiers sent for slaughter by their superiors, the paranoia of the troops in the trenches, the frustration of the war widows, the disfigured faces of those who found themselves too close to an exploding mine…”
With that prelude you’ll already have an insight into the subject matter of the song we’re presenting today — “Dissonant Weeping Of A Thousand Widows“.
Hussar prefer to present their unusual compositions in long form, and thus this new song reaches 8 1/2 minutes. You’ll also learn, if you don’t already know, that Hussar meticulously use every second to lay out a remarkably changing and continually surprising plot-line.
For example, while it’s true, as their label has written, that Hussar are capable of mounting tank attacks, the opening of “Dissonant Weeping…” is moody and introspective, progressive and even jazzy. True to its name, dissonant riffs and angular arpeggios emerge above inventive bass and drum patterns, and with mounting intensity they seem to channel confusion and anguish.
Brutish growls and harrowing howls add to the song’s scathing intensity, and the dazzling twists and turns come with increasing frequency and speed. The sudden shifts include a segue into chiming guitar notes and drifting ambient tones, which are mystical but crestfallen (and still backed by riveting drumwork). The chimes ring, but the intensity begins to build again, reaching new heights of emotional discord and desperation and new troughs of despondency.
And so, this song probably isn’t entirely (or maybe even remotely) what you expect from its title, nothing like a conventional expression of mourning and grief, but instead an intricate portrayal of bewilderment and disorientation mixed with anger, and yes, despair.
This song is the second to be revealed from Hussar‘s debut album. The first was the title track, and we’ll repeat here what we wrote about it soon after it appeared:
“All-Consuming Hunger” proves that Hussar have a talent for interesting instrumental interplay and switching things up in ways that one might be tempted to call “progressive”, but pull no punches when it comes to mauling and mangling the listener.
When they cause the music to wail and whine in unsettling fashion, they back that with electrifying rhythm-section work. When they convulse in high-speed manias, they kick the adrenaline into high gear while simultaneously creating moods of asylum-quality insanity and riotous insectile frenzy. They also drop some megaton bombs.
There’s a lot of very impressive technical execution going on (along with monstrous vocals, which include a guest appearance by Phil Tougas), but also the kind of songwriting that turns a bevy of brazen, bizarre, and unsettling motifs into insidious ear-worms. At almost 9 minutes in length, it’s one hell of a mind-boggling roller-coaster ride.
In addition to guest vocal appearances by Phil Tougas on the title track and Jeff K. on the track we’ve premiered today, All-Consuming Hunger also includes additional vocals on “Blind Charge Into Gunfire” by Chris Cadieux, David Galbrand, and Joe Galbrand, and additional vocals on “Citadel” by Cinema Livaja, Chris Cadieux, and Brody Post.
All-Consuming Hunger is set for release on September 30th in these formats:. The spectacular cover art was made by the great Luciana Nedelea.
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