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Alcest - Tristesse hivernale CD (album) cover




Experimental/Post Metal

2.25 | 20 ratings

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Conor Fynes
Prog Reviewer
2 stars 'Tristesse Hivernale' - Alcest (4/10)

Now one of the most legendary and revered names in the blackgaze and post black metal circles, Alcest has developed into quite a unique entity since first starting off here. When Alcest frontman and mastermind Neige was only 15, he began his work with Alcest with 'Tristesse Hivernale', an incredibly raw piece of atmospheric black metal. Here, Alcest is still a band as opposed to a solo project, and fairly typical for most black metal. Although incredibly poor production values (even for black metal) rob 'Tristesse' of being a wholeheartedly enjoyable experience, there is promise shown here that would be fully realized in later works.

'Tristesse Hivernale' is made of twenty minutes of howls, rough electric guitar work, somewhat simplistic blastbeats and some of the worst production values I've ever heard from a band I care about. The saving grace here though is in the composition of the music itself, which while hard to listen to at times, still really shows a grasp of the genre that many of the bigger names at the time were getting recognized for. It may be difficult at times to hear the riffs unless one listens closely, but even this early on, it is possible to hear the emotional impact of the riffs. Although there is very little of Alcest's shoegaze elements to speak of here, things do get mellow from time to time, which is much less hindered by the weak production than any of the heavier material.

Certainly a demo only for the fans of Alcest or black metal purists, but as weak a listening experience as this may be, the potential can be heard here.

Conor Fynes | 2/5 |


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