Helleruin/ De Gevreesde Ziekte – Invincible / Ω

Helleruin/ De Gevreesde Ziekte – Invincible / Ω
Babylon Doom Cult Records
Release Date: 07/01/2022

Running Time: 45:00
Review by Wallace Magri
9/10

Hey, you all! It’s been a while since I wrote my last review for Ever Metal. No big deal, I just couldn’t find the right time and vibe to sit my ass down, to listen to an album and talk about my impressions on that. The funny thing is, when people ask me what I am, I get a little confused answering that question: because I can’t define myself by telling you about what I do for a living (I am a lawyer and I teach philosophy of law, when I get paid for it). What I do know is that I write a lot, most of the time. So, basically, I guess I am a writer. 

The point here is: when I am not able to write, I know that something is going wrong in my mind. Because, If I define myself as a writer, I must write the goddamn texts, right? That is why, in order to reactivate my writing ability, instead of starting over posting on FaceBook, complaining about this and that on my wall, I decided to fight against my procrastinating tendencies by finding inspiration on what brings colour to my life: listening to Heavy Metal music – Black Metal, actually… not really colourful, I know… but black, white and grey seem like a full rainbow, in my blue sky world, at least.

While I had the writer’s block, I was listening to, from time to time, the split album from Helleruin and De Gevreesde Ziekte, “Invincible/ Ω”: 3 songs from each band, inspired by lots of second wave of Black Metal, which sounded heavy, fast and dirty enough for my old school metalhead ears. 

Helleruin is the typical one-man-band project experience – performed by Carchost, who is in charge of everything here: composing, arrangements and he also plays all the instruments – that is what I call a man who is taking on enough for himself! It seems like closing himself into a shell makes things easier for the musician to give birth to his own ideas, with nobody bothering him with details that would perhaps make the songs richer and more accessible. And, at the same time, if you are the only one who is able to understand your own composing process, it is possible that fewer people would get connected to the songs. 

Possibly, Carchost doesn’t mind about any of the arguments above and neither do I, because I loved his 3 songs, ‘Invincible’, ‘Mijn ziel aan de duivel’ and ‘We Rush Ahead’. That is it, my friends: raw producion, rough mixing, painful blast beats, tremolo-lead guitar fingering riffs and somebody screaming throughout this wall of noisy Black Metal atmosphere. There are some calm rhythm sections here and there, which helps to increase the sense of heaviness of the songs as a whole. Pretty simple, it is true, and that can’t get any better than this, I tell you! 

The 3 songs delivered by Eindhoven based De Gevreesde Ziekte are also related to the second wave of Black Metal, but with a more post-Black Metal approach on the composition process. Just listen to the 8 minute self-titled ‘De Gevreesde Ziekte’ and you are going to understand exactly what I mean. 

Fun fact: on the contrast to Helleruin, De Gevreesde Ziekte have 5 musicians giving life to the band, but they are named only by a single letter each, instead of using their actual names: L, M, T, R, K … 

Yeah, definitely “Invincible/ Ω” is a split album that either is going to blow your mind away, or make you realise that something went wrong in the history of civilization… So, if you are into bizarre Black Metal performed by anonymous / nameless individuals, just go for it and rejoice yourself with mayhem and emptiness’ momentum consuming your life!

TRACKLISTING:
01. Helleruin – Invincible
02. Helleruin – Mijn Ziel Aan De Duivel
03. Helleruin – We Rush Ahead
04. De Gevreesde Ziekte – Zwartgallig
05. De Gevreesde Ziekte – Zelfhaat
06. De Gevreesde Ziekte – De Gevreesde Ziekte
 
LINE-UP:
Helleruin:
 
Carchost – All instruments & vocals
S. – Photography
Carchost – Recording, mixing & mastering

De Gevreesde Ziekte:
 L – Guitar
M – Guitar
T – Vocals
R – Bass
K – Drums

LINKS:

Disclaimer: This review is solely the property of Wallace Magri and Ever Metal. It is strictly forbidden to copy any part of this review, unless you have the strict permission of both parties. Failure to adhere to this will be treated as plagiarism and will be reported to the relevant authorities.

Leiþa – Sisyphus

Sisyphus Album Cover Art

Leiþa – Sisyphus
Noisebringer Records
Released on: 25.06.21
Running Time: 38:28
Review by Dark Juan
Score – 10/10

Good afternoon, my nihilistic horde of bitches, bastards, and buggers! It is I, Dark Juan, once more obliging you to read a whole load of fucking nonsense masquerading as a) a record review, and b) wisdom, with shit that only I find amusing thrown in for good measure. I trust you are all grafting merrily away at whatever coalface represents your career, now we are finally out of COVID prison, with joy and carefree abandon bursting out of your grateful, hardworking and God-fearing hearts? Excellent. All is not well at Dark Juan Terrace. The Mighty Gothikpanzer has decided that it should reduce the wiper mechanism down to its component parts. In the rain, at 70mph, on the M62 just near the Little House On The Prairie. This, as you can imagine, caused me to utterly ruin my trousers with an entirely different substance than sex wee, and an imprecation or two MAY have been uttered while I was busily shitting myself. The upshot is I have borrowed the car of my daughter in law, which has been christened the Leichtes Gothikpanzer because it is small and black, until I can fit a new wiper mechanism to the Mighty Gothikpanzer. This has put me in a somewhat dark frame of mind…

Which is a bonus for you lot, as it puts me in just the right mode to appreciate the album entitled “Sisyphus”, by German band Leiþa. Leiþa is apparently the old Germanic word that equates to suffering, and the album is about that. In the words of Leiþa mastermind, Noise, “This album came to life as a result of doubt and self-loathing. That pale face that stares right back at you morning after morning from the reflection of your mirror as it displays the miserable outcome of your own existence onto yourself. The bitter taste of bile and cigarette ash you inherit following yet another day trapped in the eternal vicious circle of a worthless existence.

It is those moments certainty spits you in the face with a blend of disgust and resistance.

In moments exactly like that be sure of just one thing: You are not the only one.”

Truly a man after my own heart, then. He makes depressive, jazz and prog influenced, black metal, I write banal shite that I fool myself is popular. Kindred fucking spirits then! Both of us feel the need to perform to exorcise demons…

The record is a very strange beast indeed. The sound is unusual, insofar as it sounds like a black metal record, yet it doesn’t have the usual homegrown, recorded three miles away from a microphone made out of a fucking cucumber and baling twine sound, that BM usually employs. The sound is clear, the instruments all distinct and easy to hear, and the drumming speedy and precise (ably provided by session drummer Noderra, according to the blurb I have in front of me). The band appear to have taken Emperor’s “IX Equilibrium” as a starting point for their sound and to be honest, it’s all a bit samey. The record starts with a few black metal insane speed songs, but then settles down into a kind of mid-tempo plod, where Noise can show off his admittedly supreme guitar skills, but imagine “The Loss And Curse Of Reverence” slowed down by a third, and given a proper production, and with vocals by Shagrath instead of Ihsahn, and you have ably grasped the sound of Leiþa. It does have a strong emotional component, though, this record, that drips throughout the music, and it is primarily ultra-misanthropic hatred. It oozes from the pores of the album and it is bitter and foul-tasting and stinks of loneliness and sorrow and endless, black misery, punctuated by bouts of either naked, atavistic savagery or hysterical, tear-streaked, screaming emotional agony. The opening song (and title track) “Sisyphus” sets the store for the record by offering some choppy, chiming riffing before the song explodes into a full-bore assault upon the senses. The second track “Endlos” has a brief intro, which actually had me giggling because it quite remarkably resembles the start of “Turning Japanese” by The Vapors, no doubt unintentionally. Actually, I kind of do hope that it was on purpose, because it would accurately resemble that stage of sorrow and pain where something insignificant just starts you laughing hysterically, and you have no idea why, and can’t stop, and you know that it’s stupid, but the laughing just keeps on coming, and you’re making an arse of yourself, and you can feel the SHAME AND RAGE GROWING YET STILL YOU LAUGH LIKE A DEMENTED FREAK UNTIL YOUR NERVE SNAPS, and you run from the room hiding your shame-filled and tear streaked face, and seek solace in the darkest room in your home, away from all of the jeering, judgmental bastards out there…

You know what? First impressions don’t count for shit with this record. Remember up there when I said it was all a bit samey? It appears I may have been wrong. Leiþa have provoked a very strong emotional reaction in me. This is an album of many shades of black, from the washed out black of old t-shirts and worn drapery, to the luxuriousness and opulence of black velvet hangings and gorgeous goth gowns on equally gorgeous goth ladies, eventually to the pure black, absolute-zero waste that is space, the one place in the universe where all hope is gone. This record is musical entropy in action, and it is also far more brilliant than I thought it was on the first listen. I just wish I could understand what Noise is howling about, as it is a German language release, and the black metal banshee vocal style makes it difficult to hear any discernible syllabification. It doesn’t really help that all the German I know has been taught to me by Rammstein and Laibach.

Alrighty then – The Patented Dark Juan Blood Splat Rating System (Das patentierte Dark Juan Blutspritzer-Bewertungssystem) can’t help itself and awards Leiþa the full cream, full fat 10/10 for a record that really, truly rewards repeated listens, such is the delicacy of some of the songwriting and music. There are some staggering moments of bleak beauty on this record.

TRACKLISTING: (With helpful translations courtesy of Google Translate, so they are probably wrong)
01. Sisyphus
02. Endlos (Endless)
03. Sterben um zu sterben (To Die, To Die)
04. Gib mir Heimat (Give Me Home)
05. Mühsal (Hardship)
06. Prometheus
07. Der Feind lebt in mir (The Enemy Lives In Me)
08. Töte dich (Kill You)

LINE-UP:
Noise – Everything apart from the drums
Noderra – Session drums

LINKS:

Disclaimer: This review is solely the property of ‘Dark Juan’ and Ever Metal. It is strictly forbidden to copy any part of this review, unless you have the strict permission of both parties. Failure to adhere to this will be treated as plagiarism and will be reported to the relevant authorities.

Ylva de Lune – I

I Cover

Ylva de Lune – I
Self-Released
Release Date: 30/06/2021
Running Time: 41:47
Review by Steven Hooke
7/10

Not content with simply watching the world pass by in the midst of the pandemic, German vocalist Ylva de Lune embarked on a creative outlet in the form of this namesake post-black metal project and its debut album “I”. Partnering with a multi-instrumentalist known simply as Alpha, Ylva de Lune combines the unabashed heaviness of black metal with ethereal soundscapes and searing vocals, more befitting a Wiccan ceremony.

The combination between the two musical sounds can be considered to be somewhat estranged. Being almost split right down the middle, the rapid-fire drums and low-end guitars tend to take up the mantle of being the “heavy” of the album, whilst a second layer of guitar and Ylva’s serene vocals act as the world building and scene setting. While at times the separation can feel a little too vast, it often results in surges of euphoria, as “I” conspires with the imagery used for the album and Ylva herself to create its own vision of post-black metal, away from the traditional corpse paint and spikes of black metal, and away from the existential mire of modern blackgaze, to a forest of European tribalism and paganism.

Often these moments are accompanied by the project breaking away from the mould of standard blackgaze. On opener and closer ‘By The Sea’ and ‘Crown Of Shadows’ respectively, it’s the spoken word portions that feel like they echo through you, the inclusion of a more defined guitar lick throughout the second-half of ‘Les Ombres du Monde’, the added groove to ‘The Purpose Of Light’, these moments give the band and the album more character and contribute more to the act’s final identity.

Ylva de Lune weirdly occupies a similar space to that of post-something metal collective Sleep Token in that they produce a sound that is so easy to fall into and vibe to. Even with the bursts of a heavier sound spread throughout both band’s output, it’s a sound that you can be present for and enjoy, as much as you can sit back and relax to.

For an opening gambit in a scene that is heavily saturated with artists right now, “I” may have found a little niche for itself. Ylva’s vocals are a refreshing component of the genre and are already an integral part of the band’s sound. A few more risks and a more adept synergy between the musical low-ends and the high-ends, and the pair could really be onto something special.

TRACKLISTING:
01. By The Sea
02. Grå Ulv
03. Les Ombres du Monde
04. 11:55
05. The Purpose Of Light
06. Crown Of Shadows

LINE-UP:
Ylva de Lune – Vocals
Alpha – Guitars, Bass, Drum Programming

LINKS:

Ylva de Lune Promo Pic

Disclaimer: This review is solely the property of Steven Hooke and Ever Metal. It is strictly forbidden to copy any part of this review, unless you have the strict permission of both parties. Failure to adhere to this will be treated as plagiarism and will be reported to the relevant authorities.