I’ve been on a black metal kick the past week or so. It happens every year. I get completely absorbed in that lo-fi sound, the tinny drums and white noise guitars, and listen to it nonstop. Then, once I’ve had my fill of it, I move on until next year. It’s very much like a pagan ritual in that way. A kind of midsummer, where I let this music in and let it do some purification.
Darkspace puts out records that are all called “Dark Space.” The covers are all mostly the same. This is a great gimmick, and one that can only really work if you’re creating a type of work that already has a built-in audience. Stunts like these can be effective, you can be “all about the music” if the music is something that people will already listen to. Or maybe they’d be doing this anyway? Certainly many metal projects don’t seem to care one way or the other if you like them. But it’s tricky, because making the music unlistenable has its own benefits within the scene, where even if people don’t like the music, they respect it.
Anyway, Darkspace has some great, ambient, yes, “spacey” black metal tunes. I listened to their “Dark Space I” album yesterday, and it’s got some bangers:
Paysage d’Hiver translates from the French into “winter wonderland” or some shit, I can’t remember exactly, but the idea of it is that the music itself is some kind of entity that lives in snow. The guy behind it has been making music for 20 years, and came out with his first 2 hour album last year. The new one, “Geister,” which came out this year, is much better, mostly because you can hear the drums. While I appreciate the aesthetic of micing the drums as though you’re hearing someone practicing in a closed garage down the street, on “Geister” they get a bit thicker, and I just like the sound of a nice thick drum.
The album has a theme of the entity going into a spirit realm to do battle, which I can get behind. I love shit like this.
That’s it for today. These two bands are rabbit holes enough on their own.