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Aluk Todolo


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Aluk Todolo Descension album cover
2.97 | 15 ratings | 3 reviews | 13% 5 stars

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Studio Album, released in 2007

Songs / Tracks Listing

1. Obedience (8:22)
2. Burial Ground (10:17)
3. Woodchurch (9:27)
4. Disease (9:31)

Total Time: 37:37

Line-up / Musicians

- Shantidas Riedacker / guitar
- Matthieu Canaguier / bass
- Antoine Hadjioannou / drums

Releases information

CD Riot Reason REPOSELP015
LP Public Guilt PG013

Thanks to chamberry for the addition
and to ProgLucky for the last updates
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ALUK TODOLO Descension ratings distribution

(15 ratings)
Essential: a masterpiece of progressive rock music(13%)
Excellent addition to any prog rock music collection(13%)
Good, but non-essential (33%)
Collectors/fans only (27%)
Poor. Only for completionists (13%)

ALUK TODOLO Descension reviews

Showing all collaborators reviews and last reviews preview | Show all reviews/ratings

Collaborators/Experts Reviews

Review by Rivertree
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator / Band Submissions
2 stars Monotony in Black ...

ALUK TODOLO calls it 'Occult Rock' and presents something midway between Kraut and Tech Extreme Metal. I came across the band because of the announced Krautrock interfaces and it's true - they are noticeable because of the repetitive, industrial sounding rhythm section, a little bit comparable to FAUST and especially the project SPACE EXPLOSION. I know it's intended in this way - and with all my respect - not a great challenge for drummer Antoine Hadjioannou though. Anyhow - never listened to music like this and it's very unique indeed.

Ambient, trance and even some floydy psych elements are also to state, for example with Burial Ground which is the most catchy song for me. But in the whole this instrumental album is still not very melodic - rather with a dark and cold atmosphere, a lot of sometimes unfamiliar effects and harsh noisy walls of sounds/feedbacks. Not everyone's taste for sure - either you love it or you hate it. Not my cup of tea anyway and the summary is: recommended first of all to doom and hardcore fans.

Review by chamberry
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
4 stars The darkest, coldest, blackest and most disturbing KRAUTROCK album you'll probably hear.

This is what you get when ex-Black Metalers decide to make hypnotic and motorik rock reminiscent to what the German's where doing in the early 70's. Yes. You heard right. Black Metalers doing Krautrock. This controversial idea may either intrigue you or scare you away and I hope that you're not one of the later.

Aluk Todolo is a French band in which the three members have been previously playing in Black Metal bands (Diamatregon and Vediog Svaor) and decide to team up and play rigid, pulsating, noisy, ominous rock. The interesting thing about Aluk Todolo is that the band members bring their occult and bleak ideas of their previous bands to Aluk Todolo's music which ends up as being a combination of Krautrock instrumentation with the atmosphere of Black Metal. Adding to the virulent atmosphere the band also delves into Industrial music making the already cheerless music baneful.

The album starts off with "Obedience" which is the rawest, unrelenting and discordant track on the album. It may start slowly and quietly with a low hum in the distant background, but then it hits you hard with a wall of Industrial noise and drums blasting everywhere and it won't subside until the whole 8 minutes of the song ends. "Burial Ground" and "Woodchurch" can be seen as full song since they don't differ much in their rhythm. Sounding less aggressive than "Obedience" still won't be a good thing here. Aluk Todolo plays here with a slow and dreadful marching rhythm while the guitar screams and shrieks like lost souls burning in hell. The music here seems to get dimmer and dimmer when every song passes by and the last song, "Disease", seems like the culmination of it all. After a noisy introduction the band shows us the darkest and coldest moment on the album with a pounding rhythm (with a bass sound reminiscent to Zeuhl bands) that shakes your brain as well as the ground while listening to it. And just after the ground below you crumbles the music ends and you're on your way down to the depths of the Tartarus.

Descension isn't pretty. There's nothing melodic in it and not a single ray of light passes through the music. Aluk Todolo managed to create one of the most despiteful and wicked album that has come out of the Krautrock genre. If you're a fan of bands like Neu!, Can and This Heat, but have a certain taste for the occult (or you're simply curious like me) then I highly recommend Aluk Todolo's Descencion, even if you're using it to give nightmares to your little brothers or cousins.

Occult Rock? You bet.

Review by siLLy puPPy
COLLABORATOR PSIKE, JR/F/Canterbury & Eclectic Teams
3 stars ALUK TODOLO is one of those crafty bands that somehow just manages to fall between the cracks in the genre department with just enough characteristics of various genres but never really committing to any of them to make it clear where their allegiance is. This French band has been around since 2007 and their debut release DESCENSION is the perfect example. The trio of Antoine Hadjioannou (drums), Matthieu Canaguier (bass) and Shantidas Riedacker (guitar) took their band name from an area of islands in Indonesia and just like the scattered dots of land that emerge from the sea, so does snippets of meditative noise that rises from their hypnotic grooves.

DESCENSION is a combination of noise rock in its timbres as the jarring distortions seem utterly chaotic as they swirl around the meditative and psychedelic Krautrock type of ostinato bass that sounds like a stuck record all the while the drum lazily accompanies it. There are also ample amounts of atmospheric background ambience that builds up in violent eddies of sound and somewhat remind me of early cosmic trippers Ash Ra Tempel. The tracks are long and meditative with some like "Woodchurch" ending with wild buzzing sound effects that bleed into the next track. In fact the album almost feels like one long journey into a sonic universe where rules are thrown out the window and only rhythmic flows are constant.

While ALUK TODOLO has become famous for some of their later black metal elements that they added, on this debut they are planted firmly into the strange experimental world of noise rock with psychedelia interspersed throughout ever loose wire guitar effect and chugging bass and drumbeat march. The delivery is almost like some of the more progressive electronic artists like Coil or Throbbing Gristle only delivered with the distorted feedback of rock instrumentation. Almost like a post-rock band that wanted to be a noise rock band so became both instead. This is definitely not active music and is designed for clearing the mind and suspending any expectations. In that regard it's quite effective although perhaps a little too jarring to bring one to Rancho Relaxo and not strong enough in the song structures to initiate any kind of true musical response but certainly unique and intriguing.

3.5 rounded down

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