French Canadian Viking-themed black metal/ambient band Sanctuaire announced on their Facebook page that they are in the final stages of mixing their upcoming record, Feu Sacré (Sacred Fire). Hopefully the band have continued improving their compositional skills which advanced from their oft pedestrian Helserkr demo collection to last year’s sometimes inspiring Le Sang sur l’Acier EP.6 Comments
Autechre‘s elseq 1-5 is a four hour anthology consisting of five individual EPs, each compiled together loosely upon conceptual coherence between the constituent tracks. elseq 1-5 is an exercise in release format rather than just content; the artists behind Autechre seek to utilize the immediacy of the digital age, releasing tracks “as they go” without traditional limitations imposed by the “album.” Granted of course this collection appeared as a hulking and impenetrable dump rather than a sequence. This point bears worth remembering as this overview proceeds as the temptation to view elseq 1-5 as a complete work, or works, is ingrained in popular habits.24 Comments
Death Metal Underground staffers Lance Viggiano and Corey M. reviewed Marko Laiho’s new ambient mix he created for Radio Helsinki.
Marko Laiho’s forays into electronic music can be described as anything but explorations of the myth of the machine. Though his aesthetic pallet draws from future invocations – anything we say of the future is always about the present – he blurs the line between the biological and mechanical unlike so much of the greater genre proper. For this mix, created for Radio Helsinki, the bohemian devil troubadour crafts an enveloping near-ambient journey using samples of original work and that of other artists as well. The success or failure of music in this mode is dependent entirely upon pacing over the course of an unbroken set which in this case does not falter. Broken into halves, the latter is more recessed while the former is more pronounced.16 Comments
Article by Lance Viggiano.
Arpeggiated minor chord melancholy culled from or composed during belligerent improvisational tirades given body by a sluggish left hand approximating power chords to provide the work a lattice to the traditions of metal. Yersinia Pestis abstains from its predecessor’s thematic coherence – an accident of writing what were essentially cover songs of a famous painter – to make marked but mishandled improvements in its individual presentations through tuneful reprisals of established Goatcraft trademarks. The dependence upon staccato and arpeggio retain the artist’s characteristic stiffness in execution which blemishes through its brutishness.25 Comments
Nigromante’s Profundidades, recently reviewed by David Rosales, has been released for free download in MP3 format by experimental ambient label Spheredelic along with the earlier The Euphonies album:
Our second release in July is a double feature including the brand new album “Profundidades” as well as the reissue of the EP “The Euphonies” by Nigromante.
All music and ideas by Ebvleb. The picture for the cover layout was created by Marvin Narciso MMXV
The project Nigromante was founded between 1997/98. The shadowy figure behind Nigromante is inspired by and operating in the most deteriorated graveyards of Guatemala. Nigromante is to be listened to in the darkness of night, with pure candlelight, in order to feel the sound unleash specific emotions. It is the music of graves and the next dimension aiming at a direct contact with the lost souls of those who wander between the next dimension and this one. Nigromante is UNIQUE, a medieval modern aura of necroespiritual compositions.
Nigromante describes his music as “Necrospiritual Occult and Ethereal Nostalgia”. He uses sounds of medieval pianos, oboes, strings, etc. – all created with synths.
The Room provides a relaxing, tranquil listen. The opening trope is slightly clichéd in mood and form but it works well in context and creates a relaxed hallucinatory vibe. A lush analogue chorusing effect with solid low-end sound makes the introduction a seismic force in addition to a musical one.14 Comments
Article by David Rosales.
Receding light and surrounding darkness encroaching, a stench of death and the beginning of lamentations beyond the veil of mortality; this is the picture presented to us by Nigromante. These images cannot come from elsewhere but the deepest wellspring of human sorrow immortalized through its own seal of power, a searing symbol that brands pain and agony unto souls — that they may be thus imprisoned and chained.
“Usar un sigilo sin saber…. ¡Se maldicen a ellos mismos!”
— A. Valentina
(trans.: “To use a seal without knowing… They curse themselves!”)
Article by David Rosales.
Desolation is a full-on ambient project that blends simple and solid harmonic backgrounds, repetitive phrases of a dark coloring, with recorded lamentations both human and otherwise. The aim seems to be to produce the whole array of impressions encapsulated within that single word: desolation. The music’s structure is progressive and appears to be segmented in an episodic manner, which normally implies a loss of continuity between sections. This unwanted effect is expertly avoided by providing smooth transitions, interleaving ambient soundscapes, nature sounds, vocal improvisations, all of which bring variety within a strongly directly concept that never loses content density or a strong sense of purpose. Furthermore, the album being simply distributed between two long tracks reinforces its unity and the requirement that the audience listens to the whole work as if commencing a mental journey, which once begun must be seen through to its very end.6 Comments
Article by Lance Viggiano.
Burzum and Beherit each represent two summits of black metal’s many perspectives – in particular its looking back to look ahead ethos. The work of Laiho is exploratory and spiritual while the work of Varg is seeking and religious. Each composer followed a similar trajectory of mapping this landscape through metal first, then ambient. Each phase reveals strengths and weakness in each of their aims which results in a somewhat complementary synthesis between two highly individual bodies of work.12 Comments