have got to be an empty vessel of a human being not to
be impressed by the music of Krallice. Liking it
is a different matter. Since I am deep as fuck and
soulful like the spirit of Marvin Gaye, I am really
impressed. And like it too. Actually, I like their first
album a whole lot, it was certainly refreshing to hear a band of
virtuosos polishing the roughest aspects of the roughest
of subgenres. For far too long had black metal been pinned
by untalented musicians disguised as true purveyors of
the raw Satan. Don’t get me wrong, sloppy, lo fi,
bedroom black metal is
good and all, but it was only a matter of time until a
bunch of virtuosos would gather around to worship the
goat. And who better than Colin Marston (Behold…The
Arctopus and Dysrhythmia) and Mick Barr (Orthrelm); two
dudes who have pushed the boundaries of metal,
progressive rock and whatever it is that avant-garde
means. (Actually, I think that means whatever you want
it to mean.)
sophomore effort, Dimensional
Bleedthrough is not a departure from the sound of their
eponymous recording. As a result, it will continue to divide
black metal fans. Considering the insufferable amounts of
technique contained in these songs, this does not qualify as a
raw record of chaotic black metal. Regardless, Krallice does its
best at presenting fairly straightforward songs. And so the
tempos are fast and so are they locked with not much variation.
The emphasis is again in speed, which is emphasized by duration.
The riffs are
elaborate and labyrinthine without sounding absurd or confusing.
They tirelessly move with ease and abundant fluidity. The
melodies are inside the songs, they are not THE songs. One can
tell the melodies by isolating the guitars. There you can catch
their swift moods. Isolate the drums and bass and you get none
of that but a steady beat and a pulsating low tone. In the
vocal department now we get a bigger growl. Barr still sounds
like a suffering man. The pain must be greater this time around
because his vocals sound rawer than before.
At a point
though, it seems as if Krallice have recorded only a different
version of their debut. The songs are long exercises in how to
riff fast, how to keep a fast beat and how to sound spectral.
The band may have a point by writing long songs. I’d say this
time around, some of Dimensional Bleedthrough could have used a
bit of editing. Take the sixth song for instance; it’s an
untitled instrumental with ghostly guitar riffs, feedback and
‘barely there’ notes. At eight minutes it sounds indulgent.
Especially considering the dozens of riffs (about 50 minutes of
just went through.
The music of
Krallice is progressive because it expands the definition of
what black metal was supposed to be. Some may argue that it
actually goes against said definition and that may be true too.
Like it or not, kult or not, Krallice remains a quartet that
plays exhilarating music. If Dimensional Bleedthrough
fails to improve on the debut it is only because however
impressive it is, it also treads in water that was charted by
the band about 5,000 times in the course of the first album. And
yeah, it is also way long…