Saturday, December 12, 2015

Thy Catafalque : " Sgurr"

This is the brainchild of Tamas Katai a Hungarian mastermind . The album  starts as a blend of Eastern European folk and classical arranged in a very progressive manner it's not until the second song that they begin unveil metallic sounds , namely the guitar the vocals.The drums have an electronic skip to their step, giving the song an almost dancey feel that is counterbalanced by the throaty vocals bringing a very Killing Joke vibe to things. Young Gods would also be another point of reference for this sound. A fifteen minute song it sticks close to this groove for the first six minutes before dropping out for a sample to create an ambient narration. Things come back in way heavier almost to the point of black metal. It drifts off into Pink Floydian krautrock. This sprawling piece is followed up by something that should play in every opium den that hobbits frequent.

Metal surfaces again for "Elo Leny" it has more of a folk metal metal draped over it's  Sepultura meets industrial drumming or programming it's hard to tell, I was going to guess programming which would be almost as impressive as if he had played the drums since he found a pretty organic sound. the more atmospheric parts sounds like something D.J. Shadow mixed together.  The heavier guitar that follows this has an almost nu-metal feel to me. When "Jura" tries to strike out on it's own and be a metal song it sounds like an extension of the previous song.The sixteen minute monster that follows carries on with a very driving brand of thrash that is pretty straight forward until it hits a groove. It eventually lumbers into a more sludge like trudge. At this point we are at the four minute mark and I am wondering where the next 12 minutes could go. Pretty much on the It's a Small World of Metal ride, next they take a taste of something that is a blur of speed that  could be black metal, but much like I stated in another review recently black metal is not about the speed of which you play a blast beat or the way you scream, but the feeling of darkness it invokes. So it's fast but not black metal. The final two minutes finds this ebbing down into something more electronica.

Things are dialed way down for the instrumental interlude "Keringo" which compared to the other compositions feels more like a transitory piece , despite it's post- rock climax that kicks in midway into the song. This could very easily have been on a Godspeedyoublackemperor! album. This album is almost hard to call metal though it has some metal moments, so progressive might be the best call on this one, long winded at times  yet the scope of musicianship invested into this project and the sense of adventured endowed to these songs is impressive so I'll give this genre defying album a 9.

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