ALBUM REVIEW: Mayhem – Daemon

Twenty-five years on from De Mysteriis Dom Sathanas (Deathlike Silence) and Norwegian Black Metal act Mayhem still face the unenviable task of living up to their infamous debut. Steeped in arson and murder, the legend of De Mysteriis… will never be surpassed, but with new album Daemon (Century Media), the band have arguably crafted their finest collection of songs since that tumultuous time. 

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DIAMONDS AND MIST: Albums Round- Up

In this edition of our Reviews Round-Up, our fearless Editor Steve Tovey takes on some new and recently released albums to see if they pass the smell test.
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Nidingr – The High Heat Licks Against Heaven

Nidingr heartbeat Morten “Teloch” Iversen is a guitarist of note in the Norwegian Black Metal scene, as not only has he racked up time in acts such as Myrkur, God Seed and Gorgoroth, he is the main songwriter for Mayhem. With such a prestigious career to date Continue reading

Myrkur – M

myrkur-m

Those who caught last year’s startling eponymous EP from Danish priestess Myrkur will surely be frothing at the mouth in anticipation of début album M (both Relapse). The bewitching amalgam of aesthetics and frozen agonies decorating that EP is, it seems, the template here also: the tremendously affecting medieval harmonies and instrumentation of opener ‘Skøgen Skulle Dø’ gradually fired by a solitary scream and tremolo underpin, while the drop into the eerie coda is both stirring and unnerving.

The early stages of the album show a progression from that début, thanks in no small part to the production skills of Ulver’s Garm, and a host of guest musicians including Teloch and Christopher Amott. The tuba and piano marking ‘Hævnen’ are incredibly effective, whilst truly powerful roars and explosions of sound are balanced by winsome intonations. The lead guitar of ‘Onde Børn’ is augmented by apt pedalwork, giving it an ethereal quality which deafens the down-mixed, trad metal-style riff and blastbeats. As subtleties threaten to engulf, harsh strings produce a delightfully jagged, edgy coda for an almost perfect unity twixt the two poles.

Vocals are at times both exquisite and euphoric: the spellbinding ‘Vølvens Spådom’ a siren’s call, the blend of ecstasy and mourning given staggering might by a reverberating riff. The marching, resonant drums of ‘Jeg Er Guden…’, meanwhile, are enhanced by chiming bells and delightful switches from languid inflections to coruscating rasps. Indeed it occasionally feels as if the Black elements of Myrkur’s sound are something of a supporting cast: the heartbreaking beauty of the Tori Amos-esque ‘Nordlys’ and closer ‘Norn’, plus the lamenting ‘Bissan Lull’ sticking in the mind longer than the nonetheless effective ‘Mordet’ with its blend of Black and NWOBHM rhythms.

There remains enough hostility on offer to keep our extremists intrigued: ‘Skaði’ in particular, with truly chaotic, fearful passages akin to Aevangelist infesting its haunting body, leaves the bones nicely chilled. That something special is at work here cannot be ignored, and M is further proof that this talented, inventive lady is set to confound, attract, entrance and unite disparate factions for years to come.

 

7.5/10

 

PAUL QUINN

Video: Myrkur Releases Epic Onde Børn Music Video

Photo from the Myrkur video shoot, by Lis Dyre

Photo from the Myrkur video shoot, by Lis Dyre

Myrkur have released their first music video from their forthcoming full-length album M (Relapse), due out this August 24th. The video can be watched at this link or below:

 

 

Produced by Kristoffer Rygg (Garm of Ulver), Myrkur’s M also features the talents of Teloch of Mayhem on guitars, Øyvind Myrvoll of Nidingr & Dodheimsgard on drums, and a guest appearance by Chri Amott  (Armageddon, ex-Arch Enemy) as well. M will be the follow up to the Danish black metal artists’ solo EP effort from 2014 (also Relapse).

 

myrkur new album cover M 2015

M Tracklisting:

1 – Skøgen Skulle Dø

2 – Hævnen

3 – Onde Børn

4 – Vølvens Spådom

5 – Jeg Er Guden, I Er Tjenerne

6 – Nordlys

7 – Mordet

8 – Byssan Lull

9 – Dybt I Skoven

10 -Skadi

11 – Norn

Myrkur will perform her first ever live performance at Denmark’s Roskilde Festival alongside Deafheaven and Tombs. Numerous other festival appearances around Europe are planned throughout the year.

 

 

Myrkur tour dates:

July 4: Roskilde Festival – Roskilde, Denmark

August 22: Midgardsblot Metalfestival – Borre, Norway

Myrkur New Album Due This Summer, Hævnen Single Streaming Now

myrkur new album cover M 2015

Myrkur will release her first full-length album M, due out from Relapse Records on August 24th. Produced by Kristoffer Rygg (Garm of Ulver), the album also features the talents of Teloch of Mayhem on guitars, Øyvind Myrvoll of Nidingr & Dodheimsgard on drums, and a guest appearance by Chri Amott  (Armageddon, ex-Arch Enemy) as well. M will be the follow up to the Danish black metal artists’ solo EP effort from 2014 (also Relapse). Stream the new single Hævnen’ below

Commenting on the concepts of M, Myrkur reveals:

“The album is a story where the songs are connected. It is Nordic folk music, black metal, classical choirs and more. It feels like a soundtrack to some sort of Norse mythology horror movie with blastbeats. I wrote it about many things, as a goddess who wants revenge and to kill off people in my life, perhaps also a side of myself. I feel a strong sense of being divided into two, not one whole. a side of light and a side of shadows battle within me. And sometimes a disassociation to reality. A disconnect to the normal world and to what I am. This album tells my story and the transformation to one is complete in my mind.”

Producer Kristoffer Rygg aka Garm of ULVER on M:

“In a – for me – short, but efficient time I feel that we managed to sew together a production that will be instantly recognizable in the plethora of “history conscious” metal music, with it’s stylistic wavering between classical, folk, rock (shoegaze) and (black) metal traditions. At the same time “M” also sounds strangely contemporary to me. It goes in circles, I guess. Soundwise it’s all out classic analogue stuff. No triggered drums, brick walling or all on grid here. It’s a really natural sound harkening back to the days of old. That’s the feel (or soul) we were after and I think we captured it. It’s no secret that Amalie loves Bergtatt (our first album), and there’s even a song on the album to prove it! I’m not really a type to gush, but Myrkur is a multi-talent and she knows it. Fortunately for me we really hit it off and were on the same page from the get-go… I think our time of meeting was really auspicious as I’ve been working a bit with Ulver’s old metal back catalogue recently and with that stuff fresh in mind the feeling came natural and was a total trip for me, to summon that epic, sylvan Scandinavian sound, as it were. I am really proud to be involved, to help her make her vision come to life, and also to have her carry the torch, so to speak. I think it’s a killer album and I’m anxious to see what people think.”

Murkur, Photo by Ole Luk

M Tracklisting:

1 – Skøgen Skulle Dø

2 – Hævnen

3 – Onde Børn

4 – Vølvens Spådom

5 – Jeg Er Guden, I Er Tjenerne

6 – Nordlys

7 – Mordet

8 – Byssan Lull

9 – Dybt I Skoven

10 -Skadi

11 – Norn

Myrkur Live Dates:

Jul 4: Roskilde Festival – Roskilde, Denmark

Aug 22: Midgardsblot Metalfestiva – Borre, Norway