Saturday, August 24, 2013

Grift: Fyra Elegier Review

Grift is an old word Swedish for coffin, a very beautiful sounding word if you ask me. And it is very fitting to the music that the band this review deals with since the music is extremely beautiful, filed with an almost unbelievable amount of emotion. What Grift gives us is black metal of the melancholic kind. I guess this is what you call Suicidal black metal or whatever it is. A style of music I generally stay clear of, not so much because of the music but since it is often played by scared little children who think it is cool to slather on makeup and cut themselves. I say fuck that shit, go and hug mommy instead and get you act together. I can't stand self loathing and self pity, you life is what you make of it, grow the fuck up and start treating yourself as your one and only god. Since you are the only one who can control your faith, if life gives you lemons make lemonade!

Wait this is not the Wilhelm Lindh ranting site so okay enough of me ranting. I know absolutely nothing about this band or its members a neither do I intend to learn more about them, since for me the music should speak for itself. (So how come is it that I  don't know anything about this band, I have been so informed in the past, well I just put a lot of promos in my phone and started listening on the train on my way to the airport, and I don't have an internet connection here, so that’s why.)  So maybe the lyrics deal with something totally different than what I am expecting. But what I do know is that these guys are Swedish, or I guess that is the case since they sing in Swedish and they sound Swedish to me, in the way that the singer sounds like a native speaker. And I must say that the music sounds very Swedish to me, it is typical Shining worship here, or I guess Katatonia since they were making music to slit your wrists to before it was fashionable. You can even hear the influences from other Swedish melancholic more pop oriented bands like Kent and Thåström in some of the melodies and vocal expressions. So yeah, have you heard a dsbm (I think that is the acronym) album before you have heard this. It is slow paced with minor chord tremolo picking all the way. There is nothing new here at all, and again I generally stay clear of these kinds of clone bands. But fuck it, these guys write so great songs that I could not keep my hairy paws of them. The songs on this EP/album are stunning; they are so well written I can hardly wrap my head around it. The melodies are epic and haunting, stuff that takes a hold of you and does not want to let go.

On this album we get four tracks, which all clock in at around six minutes so even thou they are few they are long and filled with great music. This album is called fyra elergier (Swedish for four eulogize. And since there are four tracks on this release I guess that makes perfect sense.  The first one starts off with a gorgeous harmonized violin playing a Swedish folksy tune, and either this is taken from a old vinyl record or an vinyl effect has been added, anyhow it sounds really wicked and it sets a great mood and gives a good insight in what to come.

If we move over to the production, I would say that is also very stereotypical of this kind of music. It is dirty and it is raw, very fitting, but maybe a bit to thought out if you ask me. Especially the drums, they really sound like the old black metal recordings from the early 90's, and I don't really get why since it is easy to get at least a decent sounding drum recording from the most modest recording studio these days. I know that I might sound harsh since I just stated that I think the album is great. But I think that is the reason, because since it moves me so much I have a hard time not nit picking it. Maybe the drum sound does not mean so much to the most people but for me this kind of stuff matter since I could care less about the imagery and such of the band. And don`t get me wrong it is not like this album sounds like you are listening to a blender, far from it. I just think it all just sounds a bit to in line with all the must do's when creating a black metal album.

And of course the vocals follow the same trend, you know exactly what you will be getting heading in to this, but again the vocals are so fucking great at the same time. The singer´s voice is exceptional, and his vocal melodies are awesome. On the first track he is not really growling but more scream/talking. A really cool effect since it takes away a bit of the feeling “play it again Sam”. But on the remaining three songs it is more standard black metal vocals. But I guess that is not a bad thing when they are done so well.

So yeah, you like slow and melancholic black metal? Then you should most definitively check out this band, they are walking the same well trodden path that many have walked out and explored before. For sure, but they do it way better than most bands out there. There is a beauty on this record that you should not miss, and what do I know, maybe I'm just a bitter old cunt.

Sweden`s Wilhelm Lindh*, "Portuguese by adoption," guitar player,  composer and owner of the Doom / Death Metal band The Gardnerz, reviews here in Careful and professional analysis to the music and albums with suggestions of what there is to see and hear ... not to be missed. "The wisdom is found in the extremes, all extreme Metal here!".

1. Dödens dåd
2. Förtappelsens folk
3. Den fångne
4. Bortgång
Perditor - vocals & strings
J. Hallbäck - percussions

No comments:

Post a Comment