Those of you who are already familiar with the releases of the distinctive French label Antiq Records know that the bands who gather beneath its banner have an affinity for tales and tunes of bygone ages and old instruments, often melded together with the ravaging power and intensity of metal. And to that congregation of talents Antiq has added Paydretz, a French black/folk metal project featuring members of Véhémence, Himinbjorg, Hanternoz, Grylle, Belenos, and Wÿntër Ärvn.
Paydretz’s striking debut album is entitled Chroniques de l’Insurrection, set for release on October 8th. It’s a 14-track musical narrative of “the War in the Vendée” that took place in France between 1793 and 1796. This was a counter-revolution, an uprising among the French peasantry and a few royalist noblemen in the Vendée region during the Revolution’s reign of terror in Paris. It achieved a series of military victories before the counter-revolution was finally (and brutally) suppressed.
The song we’re presenting today, “Sous le Bannière Blanche“, is the sixth track in this opus. Its title refers to the white royal flag, as opposed to the Revolution’s tri-color flags of blue, white, and red. Later on in history and on the album (to borrow Antiq’s words), “defeats and fatigue of the wartime made the peasants weary of the situation and they abandoned the uprising (around 1800 and the arrival of Napoléon), so this is quite the rising of power of the album, and afterwards it declines to more bitter rage and discouraged feelings”.