Unru, Die Wiederkehr des Verdrängten (Babylon Doom Cult 2022)

German atmospheric black metal band Unru release their second long-player, Die Wiederkehr des Verdrängten.

Unru began ten years ago in Bielefeld, Germany. The trajectory of their recording career has been a cautious one. The band released a demo and a couple of splits before introducing the world to a full length experience in 2016 with Als Tier ist der Mensch nichts. That album was very well received by the growing cadre of fans, and another split and demo followed in due course. It is an understatement to declare Die Wiederkehr des Verdrängten has been looked forward to for several years but, even after a single listening, I would say it was worth the wait.

There are five long tracks on the album, ranging from five minutes to nearly sixteen minutes in duration. The first one begins in a thick gloom, droning then introducing bewitchingly lyrical vocals. The voices seem at first to be an invitation, but as they go on the tension builds and they start to take on the tang of a warning, or perhaps simply a direct threat. It is a rising tide of dark beauty that builds for nearly eight minutes. The title track follows with a structure that is somewhat more straight-forward, featuring heavy guitar riffs leading to a shift toward a blistering pace and strained, hissing black metal vocals. There is a progression in this song, too, moving in the theatrical direction and laying down dramatic passages.

The remaining songs are all epic-length. Each is its own differential combination of sounds, ideas, and techniques the band has become known for producing. The depth of the artistic expression contained in these compositions is formidable. The composers took the necessary time to ensure that the final version of each piece was precisely what they intended, and their efforts show in the impact the music has on you when you listen. I can imagine hearing these long pieces performed live at a festival like Psycho Las Vegas where you can sit back and absorb it all with no alacrity or haste. This music will mark you beneath your skin. Recommended.

Die Wiederkehr des Verdrängten is out now through Babylon Doom Cult Records in CD and digital, with vinyl to follow.


Bandcamp, https://unru.bandcamp.com/

Facebook, https://www.facebook.com/unruband

Babylon Doom Cult Records, https://www.babylondoomcultrecords.com/

© Wayne Edwards. All rights reserved.

Unru, Die Wiederkehr des Verdrängten (Babylon Doom Cult 2022)

Pisswitch ~ St. Barthelemy’s Temple, Split (Babylon Doom Cult Records 2021)

A split that takes the concept literally with bands that operate on opposite ends of the spectrum: Pisswitch and St. Barthelemy’s Temple.

Two bands of mystery come together to release a tantalizing split. Not much is known about either one. St. Barthelemy’s Temple is a black metal band from France that describes its sound as being reminiscent of Eyehategod. Meanwhile, according to the press release, Pisswitch has no web presence whatsoever and is peopled by “leading figures from today’s raw black metal scene.” OK then. Anonymous it is.

Each band contributes three long tracks. The music on each side is very different.

Pisswitch offers up tortured, raw doom with spare, hissing black metal vocals that languish in the abyss and guitars that seem to be sounding a warning at the gates of hell. Slow, immiserating, hopeless. It is beautifully dark music.

The music from St. Barthelemy’s Temple for the split, compared to Pisswitch, might be described as more traditionally black metal. The first track is heavy on the doom side, while the second picks up the speed and sponsors the percussion and vocals that are familiar to dedicated black metal fans in the first half of the song. The finish is an excellent blackened doom enterprise.

While these bands do sound very different, their music works well together on this split. They both create doom and black metal music, each one leaning in an opposite direction. They complement each other. Recommended.

The split is available this Friday, July 9th, from Babylon Doom Cult Records. Try the link below. You can watch/listen to a teaser trailer on YouTube as well by following the St. Barthelemy’s Temple Facebook link.


St. Barthelemy’s Facebook, https://www.facebook.com/St-Barthelemys-Temple-108916979189279/

Babylon Doom Cult Records, https://www.babylondoomcultrecords.com/product/pisswitch-st-barthelemys-temple-pisswitch-the-cold-mouth-of-the-earth-lp/

Babylon Doom Cult Facebook, https://www.facebook.com/babylondoomcultrecords

Pisswitch ~ St. Barthelemy’s Temple, Split (Babylon Doom Cult Records 2021)