Posts Tagged ‘Orthodox Black Metal’

Avichi, The Devil’s Fractal (2011)

A bit Weapon-ish, yes, but sufficiently fractal

My review of the second album from Illinois’s Avichi is up now at MetalReview.  The album prompts me to spin out all sorts of nonsense about whether or not black metal has to be ugly and dangerous to be effective, and whether so-called orthodox black metal is self-defeating in its attempts to be seductive.  Anyway, regardless of my bullshit, The Devil’s Fractal is out now on Profound Lore Records.

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None of these songs are Leonard Cohen covers.

Man’s Gin, “Nuclear Ambition Part 2” (2010):

I wanna die / In a concrete ocean
I wanna fly / On a neutron bomb
So blow it all down, / Hallelujah!
Hallelujah! / Let it explode

Blood Revolt, “God’s Executioner, Praise Be” (2010):

Give praise to the war giver / And hallelujah
To the blood letter
Hallelujah to the blood letter


Malign, “Sinful Fleshspear” (2002/2005):

And again, / We rejoice
For the sufferers
Deep within this sinful void


“Hallelujah” means, by the way, “Praise the Lord,” or, probably more likely, “Praise Jehovah.”  Catholics prefer the spelling “Alleluia.”  There are extremely close cognates in many other languages, including Arabic.  Whole nations praise with these words.

Attenuating and subverting the traditional impact of this monotheistic utterance through ironic recontextualization is all well and good.  Clearly, the rise of so-called “orthodox black metal” has played the largest role in this.  One wonders if its adherents and avid consumers question the reasons for its resonance.  But I”m not particularly interested in fretful hand-wringing and meditation on the meaning of religious belief in music.

I just like picking these correspondences out, setting them down together, and seeing what they look like.

Looks to me, though, like the real subversion would be an ethics of praise stripped of eschatology or transcendence.  A heavy metal of immanence, which is not, of course, to say that it is an imminent heavy metal.

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