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Negura Bunget - Zīrnindu-să CD (album) cover

ZĪRNINDU-Să

Negura Bunget

Tech/Extreme Prog Metal


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UMUR
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR
Honorary Collaborator
2 stars Zīrnindu-Sć is the debut studio album from Romanian extreme metal act Negura Bunget. Negura Bunget is a new band to me but they have been around since the mid-nineties and this debut album was released in 1996.

The music can be described as atmospheric black metal. Nothing out of the ordinary IMO. Raspy extreme black metal vocals and both fast and mid-paced black metal riffing. The music is actually pretty melodic with lots of symphonic keyboards which spice up the primitive black metal. When it“s most melodic I“m reminded of the very influential Swedish death metal band Unanimated. The lyrics are in Romanian but it doesn“t really matter much as the raspy vocals are pretty hard to understand. The vocals are pretty good IMO. Aggressive and sharp. The songwriting isn“t the best and the songs sound a bit too similar.

The musicianship is allright but it“s not excellent. The band only consists of two members at this time. Hupogrammos Disciple's ( I just love those black metal names) who plays Guitars, Vocals, Bass and Keyboards and Negru who handles drums.

The production leaves a lot to be desired and even thought it doesn“t ruin my listening experience it doesn“t enhance it either.

It“s not because of this album that Negura Bunget is on Prog Archives that“s for sure. This is actually not a bad album but it is pretty basic, melodic and symphonic black metal. Nothing of interest for progheads here IMO. 2 stars is deserved.

Report this review (#188688)
Posted Monday, November 10, 2008 | Review Permalink
2 stars The second release of Negura Bunget Zīrnindu-Să is a tipical raw black metal album, following the musical ideas of their first release From Transilvanian Forest. Is recommended only for the die hard raw black metal fans. Their is no progressive ideas on their music, the vocal are horrible, the drums are monotone and the guitar is just noise with some technical stuf (in the wrong way). The only nice thing on this album is the keyboards who sometimes create a more enjoyable sound. But there are and some good stuff on thins album, firs of all is the lyrics. Hupogrammos has become more interesting in romanian history and folklore and he abandon the Dracula and Vampires commercial story, focused on some more poetical lyrics. Also the lyrics are in old romanian language, full with archaic words and ancient incantation. For those who understand the lyrics this music really make sense, their fit so much so that gives you the impression that raw black metal is an ancient romanian music. From progressive perspective this album deserve in my opinion just 2 stars and from a extreme metal perspective it deserve 3 stars. The lyrics instead deserve 4 stars.
Report this review (#205738)
Posted Sunday, March 8, 2009 | Review Permalink
siLLy puPPy
COLLABORATOR
PSIKE, JR/F/Canterbury & Eclectic Teams
3 stars Emerging from the Carpathian forests of Western Romania in the city of Timişoara, the early makings of NEGURĂ BUNGET were forged from the ashes of a band called Makrothumia when the two members: Negru (Gabriel Mafa) on drums and Hupogrammos Disciple (Edmond Karban) on guitars, vocals, and keyboards joined forces to create the new band Wiccan Rede in 1994. Under this early moniker, the duo released the "From Transilvanian Forests" demo before changing their name to the more familiar NEGURĂ BUNGET. The new name was taken from the black fog coming from the surrounding forests and thus the band's goal was to construct an atmospheric style of black metal that reflected that concept.

Sallying forth to fulfill their mission, Negru and Hupogrammos Disciple crafted their debut album ZĪRNINDU-SĂ (Nightshade) which was recorded in only 20 hours at the Magic Sound Studio in Bucharest which explains why this album sounds a tad rushed. Initially released as a cassette only in their native Romania, the album saw a US release in 1998 on CD but wouldn't find a newer release until it appeared on the 2004 Box Set where it was remastered. Another re-recorded version emerged in 008 with a bonus CD that included both the old and new versions. Both versions exist side by side on the band's Bandcamp page for comparison but basically this debut gives little clues as to the progressive black metal mastery that NEGURĂ BUNGET would conjure up on the following albums "'n crugu bradului" and "OM" as it chugs out fairly standard black metal mileage of the era.

Following in the wake of the Scandinavian dominance of the second wave of 90s black metal, NEGURĂ BUNGET was very much playing keep up with their brethren to the north. While ZĪRNINDU-SĂ already displays a fairly unique atmospheric backdrop that would continue to evolve, the aggressive buzzsaw guitar distortion with frantic tremolo picking, a blastbeat drumming style and raspy vocals set below the distorted orotundity was pretty much the status quo of black metal by the year 1996 when this was released. While the progressive touches are light years away from the magnanimity of the future releases, there were already a few more complex riffing styles and compositional tricks that made this a tad more progressive than the likes of what Darkthrone, Immortal or Mayhem were doing at the time.

The album consists of eight tracks that exercise the same formulaic approach for the entire run. While the duo are more than competent with the mechanical chops of the guitar riffing, buried bass and melodic constructs, the biggest problem is that the keyboards are set too high in the mix and sound a bit cheesy as they fail to resemble the darkened misty forest that they claim to draw inspiration from but rather like cheap thrift store keys used for a grade school project. Likewise the songs themselves fail to ignite any excitement as they all tend to sound the same half way through the album with melodic developments that pretty much copy and paste and add a few screams in different places.

This was clearly a rough draft that was simply pumped out to get a product on the market. When compared to the following "Sala Molksa EP" that came out two years later that began to add the Romanian folk musical touches, this one just sounds too generic for its own good but it's not really that bad either. This debut while not essential by any means is certainly an interesting listen as to ascertain how quickly NEGURĂ BUNGET evolved from a meh extreme metal band to the hottest item in all of Dracula's Carpathian empire. The band would emerge as Romanian metal band #1 in a few short years but as far as this debut was concerned, you can pretty much skip to the following EP to get to the good stuff.

Report this review (#2183978)
Posted Thursday, April 18, 2019 | Review Permalink

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