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Blut Aus Nord - MoRT CD (album) cover

MORT

Blut Aus Nord

 

Experimental/Post Metal

2.84 | 10 ratings

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Prog Sothoth
4 stars One of the more polarizing metal albums I've come across, MoRT is one hell of a dissonant affair that's alternatively punishing and mesmerizing. Far removed from what the band were doing a decade before, Blut Aus Nord aim for a cold industrial tone draped by numerous deranged melodies and inhuman vocals that blend in with the guitar patterns to form an uncomfortable aura.

Unlike the sort of black metal albums that attempt to capture an air of forests in winter and howling winds of the North, MoRT aims for a more urban affair, like the darkest alleyways in the seediest corners of a dark and cold metropolis, and as an atmospheric piece it succeeds. This album is wretched, but quite enthralling. Creepy ambient passages give way to delirious chord and single note guitar patterns that are actually complex and nowhere near easy to reproduce. Sometimes it does sound like musical instruments hemorrhaging, but there will always be eerily beautiful patterns to follow them, while still remaining more than a little askew. "Chapter IV" even boasts an unusually gorgeous solo over these warped riffs that shows awareness and well thought out progressions rather than just unbridled lunacy. "Chapter V" is probably the most well-rounded number, comprising most of this albums best aspects in a single song, with even room for a bit of consonant melody to shake things up.

What will turn off some listeners is the similarities between songs, as the album plays better as an atmospheric whole, which can become tedious or stomach-turning after a while depending on what you had eaten that day. I find the music borderline fascinating as this dreary horrid ride through foggy city streets littered with trash and general dilapidation, but it's certainly not for everyone, as the tempos remain almost plodding, eschewing the more typical frenetic speeds of black metal acts, and the vocals, buried in the mix are hardly decipherable. If the running time were any longer, it would actually begin to be more of an annoyance than a nightmare.

Yet I dig it. Not as something I would play all that often, but when the conditions are right this is one strange and chilling journey. Vindsval really went all out here, much to the chagrin of a decent portion of fans of Blut Aus Nord's early work, but to the benefit of the more courageous and patient to deal with such an odd form of loud music.

Prog Sothoth | 4/5 |

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