The sound of psychedelic black metal bleeding into the gothic rock of Bauhaus...
If you’re looking for a spot of dark instrumental music to accompany your next series of invocations then look no further – Aluk Todolo are back with their fourth full length album. Loosely psychedelic, quite possibly psychotic, Voix is, as the presser that accompanies the album says “one piece, divided in six parts” and the six tracks are named 8:18, 5:01 or whatever their actual running time is. Each piece runs seamlessly into the next and they probably could have just put out one 42 minute track without breaks (Slash the Breaks on thine arm with a pole-axe!). I was particularly enamoured with their 2012 release Occult Rock, though I did mention that some peeps may have found the tracks a touch ‘same-same’ but there’s no fear of that on Voix. There’s consistency through each track yet there’s also enough subtle diversity to keep the listener engaged. Rather than dissecting each track, I shall merely highlight some of the juicier points that Voix provides.
Such highlights include the marvellously prominent bass in 5:01 – it’s unrelenting and spider-like but it’s also punctuated by howling guitars that conjure the void-spaces, while 7:01 is full of icy winds (again, a dominant bass is present). Creeping notes flit about like bats while the percussion is brilliantly apt; did it just get colder/darker in here? As a three piece, Aluk Todolo work together amazingly well; I’m not sure of the rehearsed to improvised ratio but there’s definitely a high degree of empathy with Antoine (drums), Matthieu (bass), and Shantidas (guitar). I found this album to be instrumentally reminiscent of Bauhaus – and there’s no shame in that comparison. I think Aluk Todolo’s peculiar brand of black metal/psychedelia/occult rock would come off especially well in a live environment and if they ever make it to our shores, I shall most definitely be donning my finest witchy-poo hat and toddling along. Top marks.
Voix is out now on The Ajna Offensive