Dold Vorde Ens Navn – Gjengangere I Hjertets Mørke (Soulseller Records)
Review by Milos Sebalj
Ever stopped to think how changes and new styles of Metal often come quite unannounced? For the life of me, I can’t remember if I’ve ever heard something new and completely unique that was shouted out from the rooftops as something that will change your view of the genre. Come to think of it, there are only two ways you can even attempt a novelty when it comes to a fairly close-minded genre, as Metal surely is. One is to try and bring a new outtake on the old pattern and the other is mixing one genre with the other, be it between different styles of Metal or thinking outside the genre completely. And then there is Dold Vorde Ens Navn way. The wrong one…
This is a Norwegian all-stars band. Members of Satyricon, Ulver, Dødheimsgard and a couple other bands gathered together to try and sound “fresh and unique”. Gathered under the banner of Black Metal, they have managed to shove as much of other influences as they could and create something never seen before. The thing with such attempts is that you need to fit it together so it all falls into right place and create a link between the different parts that makes sense. That’s where this quartet failed. We are offered a fine second wave Black Metal inferno, somewhat stereotypical but enjoyable Thrash Metal of the European (German?) type and slow, atmospheric passages leading into Depressive Black Metal wailing. Plus some weird vocal shrieks where they certainly do not belong. Well, vocals are mostly done quite nice and to the point when it comes to Black Metal, varying between the classical screams and clean, borderline chanting, voices. Now, the mentioned screeching might just fit the lyrics, but I’m not an expert in Norwegian language so I can’t say for sure. It just sounds weird.
As I have mentioned, the EP is missing a link between all the different sounds. It seems as if they are all stacked on top of each other without a particular order, just for the sake of diversity. It makes the music hard to focus upon both physically and emotionally as the atmosphere is jumping all over the place. Some concrete arranging would probably tie this all together nicely (if it is possible at all) but it seems a forgotten art on “Gjengangere I Hjertets Mørke”. There is just too much going on here, and it’s not a product of shallow listening. I’ve been over this release (luckily it lasts for just about 20 minutes) more than a dozen times, in a couple of days, different moods and mindsets and it still does nothing for me.
It simply needs more thought. It is not easy reinventing the wheel. Very few have managed to do so and even fewer with complete success. These Norwegians certainly have the experience and technical skills but those are just tools. Do not rush, think it through, grow and develop, and only then you can go ahead with another one of these experiments and hope for better outcome.
Oh, and do something about the visual presentation. Album cover is fine, but logo seems like some multinational electronic device company. On the other hand, total support for the band photos taken whilst taking a walk around town, with or without the crowd of people behind. Nice and (finally) original.