Gjendød – Livskramper (Dissonant Black Metal)


Black metal. From Norway. Well, that’s it, right? If you were referring to previous work by bizarro duo Gjendød you’d be right, honestly. Carrying the black metal torch is never easy, especially if you hail from the country from where it truly arose. For some, the flames of old were replaced by tiki torches, becoming a true a travesty of form. Buying eternal flames of damnation from a hardware store? Come on now. Without effort, black metal suffers. Largely speaking, with their latest, Livskramper, Gjendød do not suffer the fools of black metal to live.


I’m going to start this second section a bit differently, because my main complaint with this album is the bulk of its power is in the first half. Gjendød open with beautiful acoustics with welcome folk presence, and the suddenly burst into dissonant, frenetic riffs and monstrous wailing, followed by sections of experimental solos and folkish tremolo; a supremely curious mixture. This type of sound is the majority of the first few tracks, which is a completely different sound than not only their previous work, but most of the typical black metal coming out of Norway, or anywhere really. But, Gjendød eventually defaults to the older style you’ve heard before. Never lacking in skill, of course, but after those incredibly unusual first few tracks, it becomes a big forgetful. This makes Livskramper somewhat uneven, but it’s worth it for the unusual sections, which will completely toss your preconceptions aside.


Gjendød Official Facebook

Written by Stanley, Devourer of Souls

Gjendød – Livskramper
Osmose Productions

Cover Art: Theodor Kittelsen
4.2 / 5