Music by Detritivore. Artwork by Justin Bartlett. Produced by Joakim Jensen. Mastered by James Plotkin.
With an album cover like that I expected something dark and black and Norwegian. And it is but not in the conventional sense.
It’s hard to categorise this album. It reminds me in part of Monotheist-era Celtic Frost (it’s the dirty, slow guitar sound) and Justin Broadrick’s post-Godflesh shoegaze/drone outfit Jesu.
This album is certainly not easy to listen to in the background; the album demands your attention, and there’s something really great about that.
So, a quick run down of the tracks:
“Postludium” is initially like an atmospheric soundtrack to the zombie level of one of the Call of Duty games. Then there’s a bouncing distorted riff that puts me in mind of Apocalytica at their most energetic, and distant sung vocals in the style of something from Towering Inferno’s Kadesh (1993).
“Lutring” builds on a distorted, sustained note. This could be something from Bladerunner. The note broadens to a chord. A heavily detuned guitar punches Tom G Warrior-style riffs out through a deeply distorted amplifier. It closes with the sound of planes flying over a post-apocalyptic landscape.
“Messe” offers more weird noises into which a guitar picks out a diatonic pattern beneath a quietly wailing violin. Eventually these are joined by a bass and overdriven guitar. Sustaaaaaaaaiiiiinnnnn,,,
“Undergang” sounds like it was recorded in the London underground. During a flood. It’s a study in white noise without anyone actually saying “Shhhh!”
“Pakt”. The title track. A clean arpeggio opens the track. Bludgeoning riffs. Dischordant chords. All played slowly and deliberately.
“Finale” beings with high-pitched squeals. Out from it emerges a rolling, almost bouncing riff that eventually burns itself out after eight minutes.
This is an unexpected gem. It’s experimental. It’s interesting. It demands attention. I really, really loved this album. Well done… whoever you are.
Review score: 90%