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BLUT AUS NORD

Experimental/Post Metal • France


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Blut Aus Nord biography
BLUT AUS NORD is a French experimental/ avant garde black metal act formed in 1994 by vocalist/ guitarist VINDSVAL. VINDSVAL started the black metal act VLAD in 1993 but after recording two demos under this monicker he opted for a name change. BLUT AUS NORD recorded the first couple of releases as a one-man act before adding additional members.

The debut album Ultima Thulée was released in 1995 and a second album followed in 1996 called Memoria Vetusta I: Fathers of the Icy Age. There was a five year recording break before the third album release The Mystical Beast of Rebellion (2003). Up until then BLUT AUS NORD had been more or less a traditional black metal act but with the fourth studio album release The Work Which Transforms God (2004), the band started incorporating experimental and avant garde elements to their sound. The fifth studio album MoRT (2006) continues the avant garde approach of it´s predecessor while the band has somewhat returned to more traditional black metal ( still with some experimental elements) on their two latest studio albums Odinist - The Destruction of Reason by Illumination (2007) and Memoria Vetusta II: Dialogue with the Stars (2009).

BLUT AUS NORD´s inclusion in the the Prog Archives database has been approved by the Progressive Metal Team.

(Biography written by UMUR)

Blut Aus Nord official website

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OdinistOdinist
Candlelight 2007
Audio CD$5.37
$3.96 (used)
Memoria Vestusa III: Saturnian PoetryMemoria Vestusa III: Saturnian Poetry
Debemur Morti Prod. 2014
Audio CD$12.18
$16.17 (used)
Memoria Vetusta II / Dialogue With the StarsMemoria Vetusta II / Dialogue With the Stars
Candlelight 2009
Audio CD$5.92
$5.91 (used)
Ultima ThuleeUltima Thulee
Candlelight 2005
Audio CD$5.13
$4.50 (used)
Memoria Vetusta:  Fathers Of The Icy AgesMemoria Vetusta: Fathers Of The Icy Ages
Candlelight 2005
Audio CD$5.38
$5.37 (used)
Work Which Transforms God\ThemWork Which Transforms God\Them
Candlelight 2005
Audio CD$7.26
$5.26 (used)
777: Cosmosophy777: Cosmosophy
Season of Mist 2012
Audio CD$11.94
$7.16 (used)
MortMort
Candlelight 2006
Audio CD$3.35
$6.82 (used)
777 - The Desanctification777 - The Desanctification
CAROLINE GENERAL CAT
Audio CD$10.99
$27.17 (used)
TriunityTriunity
Red Distribution 2014
Audio CD$12.02
$16.77 (used)
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BLUT AUS NORD discography


Ordered by release date | Showing ratings (top albums) | Help Progarchives.com to complete the discography and add albums

BLUT AUS NORD top albums (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

2.68 | 9 ratings
Ultima Thulée
1995
2.69 | 7 ratings
Memoria Vetusta I: Fathers of the Icy Age
1996
2.34 | 10 ratings
The Mystical Beast of Rebellion
2001
3.70 | 14 ratings
The Work Which Transforms God
2003
2.84 | 10 ratings
MoRT
2006
3.07 | 9 ratings
Odinist - The Destruction of Reason by Illumination
2007
1.10 | 2 ratings
Dissociated Human Junction
2007
3.16 | 12 ratings
Memoria Vetusta II: Dialogue with the Stars
2009
3.65 | 11 ratings
777 - Sect(s)
2011
3.76 | 11 ratings
777 - The Desanctification
2011
4.18 | 8 ratings
777 - Cosmosophy
2012
3.75 | 4 ratings
Memoria Vetusta III: Saturnian Poetry
2014

BLUT AUS NORD Live Albums (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

BLUT AUS NORD Videos (DVD, Blu-ray, VHS etc)

BLUT AUS NORD Boxset & Compilations (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

BLUT AUS NORD Official Singles, EPs, Fan Club & Promo (CD, EP/LP, MC, Digital Media Download)

1.00 | 1 ratings
Decorporation...
2004
2.67 | 3 ratings
Thematic Emanation Of Archetypal Multiplicity
2005
2.58 | 5 ratings
What Once Was... Liber I
2010
4.00 | 1 ratings
What Once Was... Liber II
2012
3.00 | 1 ratings
What Once Was... Liber III
2013

BLUT AUS NORD Reviews


Showing last 10 reviews only
 What Once Was... Liber II by BLUT AUS NORD album cover Singles/EPs/Fan Club/Promo, 2012
4.00 | 1 ratings

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What Once Was... Liber II
Blut Aus Nord Experimental/Post Metal

Review by CassandraLeo

— First review of this album —
4 stars The What Once Was series (which shares a name with infamous black metal band Burzum's second album) is self-styled as Blut aus Nord's 'back to basics' series of EPs, intended to throw in some old-school death metal influence into their unusual mix of black metal, industrial, and progressive metal. For all that it's intended to be more primitive, the series still throws the band's signature odd time signatures and dissonance everywhere, and it's still unmistakably the work of Blut aus Nord.

Of the three releases in the series thus far (more are evidently planned), Volume II is probably the strongest. It's also likely to be the most interesting to fans of progressive metal, what with the nine-and-a-half-minute opening track (the longest track on any of these releases to date). The other tracks are quite solid as well, especially the last one, which to my estimation has one of the best riffs on any Blut aus Nord release (right up there with the riff in Memoria Vetusta II's 'The Formless Sphere').

The release still has the odd textures, tremolo picking, blast beats, harsh vocals, and warped dissonance one would expect from any of the band's non-Memoria Vetusta/Ultima Thulee releases, so black metal-phobic fans are forewarned. It may also be difficult for people who don't own a vinyl player to track down a digital recording of this release, because there isn't an official one (although vinyl rips do circulate the internet). But for those who are open to such things, there is quite a bit of enjoyable listening to be found here.

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 Memoria Vetusta II: Dialogue with the Stars by BLUT AUS NORD album cover Studio Album, 2009
3.16 | 12 ratings

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Memoria Vetusta II: Dialogue with the Stars
Blut Aus Nord Experimental/Post Metal

Review by CassandraLeo

5 stars The title (indicating that this is a direct sequel to the band's sophomore effort) might suggest that Blut aus Nord was performing a conscious throwback to its early years. And to a rather large extent, that's true. This unquestionably belongs to the melodic black metal genre, and the melodic elements of the songwriting are unquestionably of a piece with the band's early material.

But thirteen years passed in between the release of Memoria Vetusta I and this album, and in that time Blut aus Nord picked up elements of industrial metal, avant-garde metal, progressive metal, and more. This isn't in line with the dissonant material found on albums like The Work Which Transforms God or the first two volumes of the 777 trilogy, but a closer listen to the instrumentation will reveal that a number of the instrumental textures found on those records can also be found here. A closer listen to the songwriting will reveal that this has every bit of the odd time signatures, structural complexity, and general weirdness found in the band's progressive metal works. This may sound like simple melodic black metal on the surface, but it's a lot more than that.

Quite a few fans have singled this recording out as Blut aus Nord's finest work, and it's certainly the one I've gone back to most often. It's in many ways the band's most tuneful release (insofar as anything with harsh vocals overlaying everything can be tuneful), and in some ways it's even a bit relaxing. It doesn't help that some of the riffs are utterly killer, either. If you want to get someone into extreme metal, just play them the riff at the end of "The Formless Sphere". I could listen to that riff all day.

This may not be standard progressive metal, but there is a lot here for prog fans who want to dig below the surface, as long as you're willing to dig past the harsh vocals. It may not be the best point of introduction for new listeners to this band who aren't used to black metal; that's probably Cosmosophy, but if you've digested that and are wondering where to go next, I find this to be an excellent next step. The next entry in this series, Saturnian Poetry, has a higher rating on this site (and it's the band's first full-length recording to contain live rather than programmed drums), but for my money they've never topped this record.

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 Memoria Vetusta I: Fathers of the Icy Age by BLUT AUS NORD album cover Studio Album, 1996
2.69 | 7 ratings

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Memoria Vetusta I: Fathers of the Icy Age
Blut Aus Nord Experimental/Post Metal

Review by UMUR
Special Collaborator Honorary Collaborator

3 stars "Memoria Vetusta I: Fathers of the Icy Age" is the 2nd full-length studio album by French black metal act Blut aus Nord. The album was released through Impure Creations Records in 1996. The original version was limited to 1000 copies. The album was re-released by Candlelight Records US division in 2005 with the shortened title "Fathers of the Icy Age".

The music on the album is atmospheric and at times slightly experimental black metal. The vocals are raspy. The use of keyboards in the music really enhances the dark atmosphere and at times provide an epic touch to the tracks. The music is not symphonic though and the keyboards are generally very tastefully placed in the mix and clearly composed to create atmosphere rather than playing a lead role. The tempos in the tracks are mostly mid-paced but there are faster paced parts too. The generally (for black metal) slow pace also helps build the epic atmosphere that is present on the album.

The sound production is raw and a bit lo-fi, but not without charm, and it suits the rawness of the music well. Upon conclusion "Memoria Vetusta I: Fathers of the Icy Age" is a good quality atmospheric black metal release and a great follow up to "Ultima Thulée (1995)". The music is intriguing and cleverly composed, the musicianship are solid, and the sound production suits the music, so I´d say a 3.5 star (70%) rating is fair.

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 The Work Which Transforms God by BLUT AUS NORD album cover Studio Album, 2003
3.70 | 14 ratings

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The Work Which Transforms God
Blut Aus Nord Experimental/Post Metal

Review by Warthur
Prog Reviewer

4 stars Mingling eerie ambient instrumental sections with brutal traditional black metal and capped off with the doomy epic of Procession of the Dead Clowns, The Work Which Transforms God finds Blut Aus Nord really showing their range. It's sufficiently rooted in black metal that if you don't like the chilly aesthetic of that scene you probably won't enjoy the album, and black metal purists might find the ambient sections boring, but if you're up for a blend of dark ambient and darker metal it's a confident, credible release which sets the scene for further experimentation from Blut Aus Nord later on down the line.

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 MoRT by BLUT AUS NORD album cover Studio Album, 2006
2.84 | 10 ratings

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MoRT
Blut Aus Nord Experimental/Post Metal

Review by Prog Sothoth
Collaborator Prog Metal Team

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.

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 777 - Cosmosophy by BLUT AUS NORD album cover Studio Album, 2012
4.18 | 8 ratings

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777 - Cosmosophy
Blut Aus Nord Experimental/Post Metal

Review by Puppies On Acid

4 stars Atmospheric, industrial, ambient black metal...? Or something like that. There aren't too many bands that sound even close to Blut Aus Nord. They are one of the more unique bands to come out of the black metal scene and this albums just serves to prove that. This is probably their slowest/least aggressive album to date, but it does so many things right. Spacey and open atmospheric melodies let the music really breathe, while at the same time it can be crushing with its haunting overtones and trance-like riffs. Well worth picking up, especially if you have already heard the first 2 albums in this trilogy and/or already are a fan of Blut Aus Nord and their ever changing sound. It also proves, at least to me, that some of the best black metal comes out of France these days.

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 Odinist - The Destruction of Reason by Illumination by BLUT AUS NORD album cover Studio Album, 2007
3.07 | 9 ratings

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Odinist - The Destruction of Reason by Illumination
Blut Aus Nord Experimental/Post Metal

Review by Conor Fynes
Prog Reviewer

3 stars 'Odinist' - Blut Aus Nord (6/10)

It's a curious thing that, as one of my most-loved black metal bands, Blut Aus Nord crosses me as such an inconsistent band. I wouldn't say that I've ever heard music of theirs that repulsed me, but there stands a great gap between their excellent and masterful work, and the stuff that just barely passes the standard of quality. On "Odinist", we hear Blut Aus Nord pursuing a familiar sound, fusing unsettling guitar textures with coldly industrial rhythms and atmosphere. As the band's more recent work goes, it feels curiously regressive for their style. Unlike the monumental "The Work That Transforms God" or the "777" series that would later follow, Blut Aus Nord keep their sights focused on a single approach throughout. The music is given the same darkly experimental vibe I've come to expect from Blut Aus Nord's music, but as an album, it leaves a sense of incompletion. "Odinist" offers more of the same challenging dissonance, but it doesn't offer the same dynamism heard in their best work.

Compared to any traditional form of black metal, Blut Aus Nord's music comes as something of a system shock, and this is no different on "Odinist". Although the same black metal sound palette is retained, Blut Aus Nord never feel aggressive, or even emotional. Like much of their mid and latter era work, "Odinist" feels defined by the inherent lack of emotion. This may not necessarily impede a listener from feeling some sense of foreboding dread, but Blut Aus Nord's style evokes a sense of unfeeling humanity. It's as if the world went through a Dr. Strangelove-ordeal nuclear winter, and all that was left was a bitter superintelligent AI computer with a penchant for black metal. The guitars and drums each sound sterile and cold, although- as anyone who's experienced their unique atmosphere- this isn't necessarily a bad thing. As a sort of contrast, the vocals are garbled and indecipherable, sounding about as reserved as a diabolical rasp can get. Perhaps moreso than other Blut Aus Nord albums, "Odinist" emphasizes this 'cold' feeling. For music so mechanical, there's a monstrously profound malevolence in the atmosphere of "Odinist". Perhaps it gets across through the guitars- which sound perpetually out of tune and 'off'- but the atmosphere is certainly the highlight here. Sadly, this seems to be the only thing that Blut Aus Nord really excel at here.

Although there are several fantastic riffs here (the melodic motif on the title track really stands out), "Odinist" rarely conveys a sense of focus in its songwriting. The riffs are well- composed in of themselves, but they're tied together with little adhesive or flow. As if the industrial assembly line seeks to manufacture parts at random, Blut Aus Nord's composition feels noticeably lowered. The occasionally incompatible riff structure is a staple of Blut Aus Nord's music, but it is taken too far on "Odinist". Were it not for the brilliant industrial element, the album would have risked becoming incredibly boring within a few tracks. Blut Aus Nord's music is challenging, but even several listens in, there's never the sense that the songs have some secret code to crack. Paired with an intro and outro that feel largely disconnected with the rest of the album, "Odinist" suffers from a poor sense of structure and flow. It's one of the weaker records they've put out, but their inimitable style and atmosphere is here, and that's enough to warrant checking it out.

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 Memoria Vetusta II: Dialogue with the Stars by BLUT AUS NORD album cover Studio Album, 2009
3.16 | 12 ratings

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Memoria Vetusta II: Dialogue with the Stars
Blut Aus Nord Experimental/Post Metal

Review by Warthur
Prog Reviewer

4 stars Designating this album as a sequel to the earlier Memoria Vetusta album is a fairly clear sign that this time around Blut Aus Nord intends to kick back and get back to its roots rather than pressing into more novel territory. But as far as old school atmospheric black metal with a progressive spin goes, it's a more than acceptable album. As you might expect from the subtitle, there's a spacey angle woven into the music here and there - nothing as way-out-there as Darkspace, but just an undercurrent slipped in via the band's adept and subtle use of synthesisers, which is never allowed to overshadow the main point of the exercise - which is to rock the hell out, old school black metal style.

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 777 - The Desanctification by BLUT AUS NORD album cover Studio Album, 2011
3.76 | 11 ratings

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777 - The Desanctification
Blut Aus Nord Experimental/Post Metal

Review by Epignosis
Special Collaborator Eclectic Prog Team

3 stars Blut Aus Nord essentially eschews melody for atonal barrages of sound. Loaded with industrial black metal demonstrations, the album uses growling in a way that supplements the rhythm, hissing and sneering underneath the barrage of drums and distorted guitars. Despite the aggression, the music overall bores this listener. With a few exceptions, the individual tracks are much too repetitive, as the band lingers with the same set of chords and atmospheres to the point of tedium. That said, Blut Aus Nord has crafted some very interesting rhythms and sonic environments.

"Epitome VII" A steady repetitive rhythm provides the framework for grim vocals. Halfway through, it adopts some mild Eastern influences. The third section takes an interesting twist, adopting a slightly symphonic power metal visage. Finally, the music degenerates into avant-metal mayhem.

"Epitome VIII" Thundering drums and muttering guitars provide a dark current over which floats harsh voices. The distant guitar solo at the midway point reflects post-rock tendencies and is the highlight of the piece.

"Epitome IX" Toning things down a great deal, this third track has mysterious Eastern guitar sounds, like a swamp in the middle of a desert at night.

"Epitome X" Returning to the moderately paced harsh rock, the vocals snarl under layers of steady metal tones. Following an apt guitar solo, the rhythm shifts several times, warping into many different ugly roars of noise.

"Epitome XI" A more plodding piece of music, somewhat haunting with its discomfiting tones and whispers swirling around the low rhythms.

"Epitome XII" Disconcerting ringing opens the penultimate track, ushering thick drums and two guitars, one hammering out low chords and the other weaving through higher-pitched notes like an angry wasp prepared to sting.

"Epitome XIII" Dissonant guitars lead into one final monstrous opus. Exploding chords charge through the entire seven minutes. Halfway through, however, the band does settle into a more melodic passage for a time. Eventually, it whines like a swarm of insects.

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 The Work Which Transforms God by BLUT AUS NORD album cover Studio Album, 2003
3.70 | 14 ratings

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The Work Which Transforms God
Blut Aus Nord Experimental/Post Metal

Review by Prog Sothoth
Collaborator Prog Metal Team

4 stars With song titles like "The Choir of the Dead" and "Procession of the Dead Clowns", this is not an album to play as background music for bingo events or Sunday brunches. It's bleak, cold, unforgivable and downright mean sounding. It's also pretty noisy, which most likely helps constitute why Blut Aus Nord doesn't get a lot of love here.

The music is almost a miasma of buzzy guitars playing dissonant melodies propulsed by somewhat industrial sounding drum tracks that pinball between slow grooves and ripping blasts. Vocals are basically growls and screams that are completely indecipherable, along with some distant additional vocal tracks that sort of meander and weave in and out of the music along with some keyboards to add to the creepy aura. There are a few tracks that are essentially eerie interludes to keep the haunting vibe afloat before the next onslaught of hair- raising chord progressions kicks in.

The French black metal scene had some unique ideas and style going on the first decade of this century judging by this effort. The guitar playing in particular is played in an interesting fashion...such as two guitars deliberately tuned to be a bit 'off' from each other to create this sick sounding swarming insect sound...which reminds me of Deathspell Omega to some extent, although this Blut Aus Nord album just about predates DsO's incorporation of that dissonant aggression into their work. Normally the idea of programmed drums is a big turn off for me, but in this case they work. There's a surprising amount of creativity going on in the programming, as if the tracks were performed by some progbot software.

There are a few tracks that don't quite measure up to others here, but songs like "The Choir of the Damned" with its angry bizarre riffs and the impressive variations on display in "Our Blessed Frozen Cells" are just too damn good to deny. The last track ends things on an impressive note as well, sounding almost gorgeous in a weirdly majestic fashion. I'm no fan of stagnant by-the-numbers black metal, thus I found this to be a bit of a treat and it had a sound of its own when it was released.

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Thanks to The T for the artist addition.

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