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MOLOKEN

Experimental/Post Metal • Sweden


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Moloken biography
MOLOKEN are a sludge/post metal band, formed in Umeå, Sweden in the autumn of 2007, starting at first as a side-project of Kristoffer BÄCKSTRÖM (guitars, vocals), singer and bass player in the hardcore band THE POOKIE SYNDROME. After a rough tape recording named 'Six Songs of Happiness' with a temporary line-up (Markus L on drums and Dag F. on vocals), a complete line-up was soon after formed with Jakob BURSTEDT (drums), Johan ÖMAN (guitars) and Kristoffer's brother, Nicklas BÄCKSTRÖM (vocals, bass). Their debut EP 'We All Face the Dark Alone' was released in August 2008 to positive reviews from critics and the underground scene, with the band playing several shows across Sweden. Their first full-length release came in September 2009 entitled 'Our Astral Circle'. 2009 also saw the departure of Johan ÖMAN and his replacement by Patrik YLMEFORS. Through to 2011, the band plays several shows in Scandinavia and continental Europe and in November 2011 they release their second album 'Rural' through Discouraged Records (as for all their previous releases).

The band describes their music as being influenced by the 90's death/doom and black metal era together with 70's progressive rock. Their sound is similar to modern post/sludge metal but with occasional extreme and fast passages, blended with hardcore and atmospheric metal.

Biography by aapatsos

Moloken official website

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Buy MOLOKEN Music


Our Astral CircleOur Astral Circle
Import
Discouraged Records 2010
Audio CD$121.18
RuralRural
101 DISTRIBUTION 2012
Audio CD$6.00
$47.11 (used)

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MOLOKEN discography


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MOLOKEN top albums (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

0.00 | 0 ratings
Our Astral Circle
2009
4.43 | 4 ratings
Rural
2011

MOLOKEN Live Albums (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

MOLOKEN Videos (DVD, Blu-ray, VHS etc)

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

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

0.00 | 0 ratings
We All Face the Dark Alone
2008

MOLOKEN Reviews


Showing last 10 reviews only
 Rural by MOLOKEN album cover Studio Album, 2011
4.43 | 4 ratings

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Rural
Moloken Experimental/Post Metal

Review by Conor Fynes
Prog Reviewer

5 stars 'Rural' - Moloken (9/10)

As if Gorguts met Isis for lunch and the two later casually partook in rough coitus, Sweden's Moloken make some heavy, heavy music. Call it progressive sludge metal or even an incredibly atmospheric derivative of death metal, the band's second record "Rural" is an oppressive sea of fury, and it resonates with me in a way few bands of its style manage to do. The songwriting may be solid and the production some of the best I've seen in metal, but it's the ubiquitous atmosphere that has this album screaming 'masterpiece'.

In their press kit and interviews, Moloken have voiced a concern that all too many bands in metal ultimately sound indistinguishable from one another; a bleak statement I have sadly come to agree with. True enough, Moloken's resistance from this heavy metal clone complex pays off. Although their dark brand of post-metal can still find itself associated with a number of prescribed genres, "Rural" feels like a natural collision of influences from across the spectrum, from black and doom metal to vintage psychedelia. The closest thing I might compare "Rural" to are Gorguts' "Obscura" and "From Wisdom To Hate" albums. The Bäckström brothers' aggressive screams and the highly dissonant guitar riffing is reminiscent of Gorguts, although the compositions are more akin to traditionally atmospheric post-metal like Cult of Luna.

As a whole "Rural" relies on a sickening atmosphere of rage and fear. Although Moloken sticks exclusively to their guitars, drums, and vocals, the music sounds vast. "The Titan Above Us" introduces the sinister mood that pervades the majority of the album. By the epic cornerstone "Ulv", Moloken have developed their riff energy into a dense fury complete with burstfire picking and blast beats plucked out of black metal canon. All the while, Moloken layer their music with atonal psychedelic clean guitars that sound similar to some of Mastodon's more progressive material. The band's style will certainly draw a number of comparisons with other bands, but Moloken combine the elements and make the sound truly their own.

Although it's not the biggest reason why "Rural" has stood out to me so much, it's worth mentioning that Moloken enjoy some of the richest, most organic production I have heard on a metal record for quite some time. Perhaps it's the heavy presence of the bass guitar, but Moloken find an incredible balance between a live 'raw' energy, and a clear mix between instruments. It certainly doesn't hurt that Moloken channel their atmosphere-laden heaviness through such an organic studio execution. Those willing to set the time aside to fairly digest the atmosphere will find an incredible world to explore with "Rural", one governed by anger and chaos. I give my highest recommendation.

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 Rural by MOLOKEN album cover Studio Album, 2011
4.43 | 4 ratings

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Rural
Moloken Experimental/Post Metal

Review by UMUR
Special Collaborator Honorary Collaborator

4 stars "Rural" is the 2nd full-length studio album by Swedish Atmospheric Sludge Metal/Post- Hardcore act Moloken. The album was released through Discouraged Records in November 2011. Moloken hail from the small city of Holmsund, which serves as a port for Umeå (the city that spawned Meshuggah). holmsund/Umeå are situated in the northern part of Sweden.

...I guess the geography lesson is meant to portray why Moloken´s music is so dark and oppressive. There´s just something unique about those people coming from the northern part of Scandinavia. A bleak melancholic mood that Moloken successfully transfer to their music. Moloken play a blend of atmospheric sludge and post metal/hardcore. Acts like Neurosis and especially fellow Swedes Breach come to mind. The vocals are harsh and shouting but with an additional howling tone that reminds me slightly of how Luc Lemay sounded on "Obscura (1998)" by Gorguts. This is of course not death metal but the vocals are pretty extreme (to my great enjoyment).

There are seven tracks on the 52:14 minutes long album. All high quality material. The tempo is slow- mid paced with good variation. The tracks are generally structually challenging and it´s no surprise that the 16:23 minutes long centerpiece of the album titled "Ulv" takes the prize as the most progressively structured track. While most of the album is dark, chaotic, twisted and aggressive, "Rural" closes with "Åland" which is a mellow and atmospheric post rock track. A good choice for variation, which also gives the listener time to reflect over what he/she has just listened to. The way a tracklist is build, is a crucial ingredient of any successful album release and "Rural" features a really nice flow. Add to that an organic and powerful sound production and there´s little here to complain about.

..."Rural" has actually impressed me a lot more than my initial listen suggested, and I´ve ended up really enjoying the album. it´s dark, chaotic, aggressive, challenging and upon repeated spins some original elements have also revealed themselves. A 4 star (80%) rating is fully deserved.

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