† And then the Curse swept the Earth

quinta-feira, 22 de março de 2012

Svarte Greiner "Kappe"

It's been a while since i've posted some ambient, droning stuff. I guess it comes often, depending of my state of mind. In need of this "numbness" into my mind, i recently picked up Svarte Greiner's "Kappe". Svarte Greiner is a dark ambient project by Erik K Skodvin (full name, Erik Knive Skodvin), half of the Norwegian duo Deaf Center, formed in 2005 in Oslo.

At a first impression you might wonder what does it sound like. I can tell you it sounds exactly like it looks, just look at the artwork. The whole environmental palette on this album is just dark, dark, dark. "Kappe" is not an easy album for the common easy listener. But if you dare to look deeper into this sonic abyss, go ahead, continue reading.

the set is opened with "Tunnel Of Love", a blurry swell of dense tones and funereal howling before eventually throwing in a metallic clamour that cuts through the murk in a brilliantly discordant fashion. Disfigured guitars hum and fray in the background, but it's not until "Where Am I?" that more substantial drone developments take hold. The piece evolves from a sequence of glacial tones that eventually dissipate into the background, transformed into what might pass for demonic whalesong emanating from a misty fjord. Next comes the intriguingly titled "Candle Light Dinner Actress", the longest of the four pieces here and easily the most astonishing, hovering weightlessly over sixteen minutes of strained harmonics and searing overtones that will leave you gasping for breath. As is often the case with Svarte Greiner releases, it's not always easy to tell what instruments and sound sources are being tapped for these unearthly noises, but there's surely some deconstructed electric guitar in there somewhere and some heavily cloaked saxophone tones. Wrapping up the album, "Last Light" makes for a fittingly elegiac closing piece, populated by thick, noxious vapours, disembodied found sounds and strings bowed so coarsely and heavily that they begin to take on a knotted, thorny quality. There's a real air of restraint about "Kappe", and it's an album loaded with dark energy, always poised ambiguously between outright aural punishment and an impenetrably black chasm. A masterclass in organic, artful gloom, "Kappe" comes with the highest possible recommendation. You can buy this here.

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