Me And That Man – Songs Of Love And Death

When the lead singer of one of the biggest extreme metal bands ever announces that he’s going to write a “blues, country and folk” album, the response from fans is going to be….well extreme. Some fans will automatically write it off as a joke, but others will take the time to enjoy all aspects of the man’s musical world, and open their mind to the endless possibilities. When I first heard about Adam “Nergal” Darski‘s Me And That Man project, I was beyond excited. This is a man who truly pours his heart and soul into everything he does, and once I heard he teamed up with the legendary artist, John Porter, for this record, I knew this was going to be something special, and that’s exactly what it is.

Songs Of Love And Death is a haunting retrospective look at two of the biggest forces in our world, and the way that these two musicians pull it off is absolutely amazing. As he does in Behemoth, Nergal does not bite his tongue, and with lyrics like “Sing hallelujah, No kingdom come“, “I won’t offer no salvation, I was born to raise some hell” and “I have paved my way to hell, better the Devil I know” spread throughout the record, it’s just as dark as anything he’s done before. While he is effective screaming these beliefs in Behemoth, with the accompaniment of the acoustic atmosphere surround him on this record, the words are given a whole new power.

One of the biggest questions surrounding this record for me was the music. “Blues, country and folk” can mean a lot of things to a lot of people, and growing up in the South, I had an idea in my head of what to expect, and this record exceeded all of my expectations. Every song on this album is completely different from the other, but they flow together perfectly with the overriding theme of the lyrics. Whether it’s the strum of acoustic guitars, the hum of a brooding harmonica, the soul of a slide guitar, the thump of a caj√≥n, or synthesizers that sound like they’re from hell, the musical composition on this record blew me away. I knew that Nergal was aiming for a similar sound as a Nick Cave or Leonard Cohen release, but he and John Porter took those two influences, along with many others, and came up with an astonishing soundtrack for the topics we know as love and death.

Like I said before, Nergal pours his heart into everything he does, and Songs Of Love And Death is another testament to that fact. The Behemoth frontman may not scream one word on this album, but you hear the anger and pain in each song, and with the legendary John Porter beside him, they’ve created one of my favorite records of the year so far. This is not a typical “blues, country and folk” album, as he said last year. This is a dark, wicked, and fascinating look into these two musicians souls, and a record I can’t stand behind enough.

Rating: 9.0/10

Order your copy of Songs of Love and Death here.