(The Montréal black metal band Ossuaire released two related albums this year through Sepulchral Productions, one in April and one in October, and Andy Synn reviews both of them here.)
Imitation, so they say, is the sincerest form of flattery.
Whereas innovation is one of the prime forms of creativity.
In between these two poles, however, is iteration, and that’s where most artists ply their trade, building upon what has come before, taking bits and pieces of their influences for themselves.
This is particularly true in Black Metal, where the form of the music, the integral demands of shape and structure, play a decisive role in making it what it is. And while that doesn’t preclude bands from totally innovating on the concept, the truth is that there’s only so far you can go, so much you can innovate, before you stop playing Black Metal at all.
Ossuaire clearly know this, and know it well. And, as such, their music is not about breaking the mould or reinventing the wheel, but about striving to capture the purest essence of Black Metal in all its grimly grandiose, mercilessly melodic glory.