Friday, 2 January 2015

Apocryphal Voice - Pain & Pleasure (CD review)

01.Underneath The Mask
02.A Failed Species
03.As Fire Itself Dances
04.Tonhue Of Kali
05.Muddy Trail
06.Inner Turmoil
07.Rebel Angels
08.Waves Of Transparency
09.Megalomaniac Euphoria

Juhani Jokisalo (Guitar/Bass/Vocals)
Ville Salonen (Drums)

Apocryphal Voice is a metal duo from Finland formed in 1999.
The roots of Apocryphal Voice come from around '98-'99 when Juhani felt compelled to create something very different from the conventional and soothing styled Absent Silence he was as a bassist in at the time. Something dissonant and intense art demanded to come forward due to emotional turmoil. He left the old band and found out that finding musicians driven for rebellious unconventional form was nearly impossible, so a drummer Ville Salonen landed as the only other member for this new band.

"The Sickening", a strange and anguished burst of 3 songs, was recorded in late 2000 to be merely a demo, and it was sent here and there to numerous small labels. A label called Rage Of Achilles somehow got hold of the demo and was willing to release it as an official mini-cd.

During following years the album "Stilltrapped" was composed, with the unflinchingly sincere overall theme of personal depression. Little by little, it was self-produced and recorded, with the exception of drumtracks recorded last and in an actual professional studio.

'Underneath The Mask' may have a "nice" little piano opening but it soon becomes a raw yet melodic take on black metal in the style of early darkthrone and satyricon.

The speed increases with 'A Failed Species', very much a drum driven piece with frantic double pedal work, some intresting and clever timing changes keep this one less predictable.

Up next is an 8 minute monster called 'As Fire Itself Dances', straight forward riffs and more frantic drumming are tempered with some quality vocals with that perfect blend of agression and harmony.

'Tongue Of Kali' sticks to the same idea, then comes 'Muddy Trail' a slower and at times almost confusing sounding song, seems to be a bid muddled with none of the instruments really following obvious chord structures, with these strange timings at the forefront the high speed pace of the double pedal work seems to be the only constant, throw into this some near industrial synthlike breakdowns and you have a very intresting piece.

'Inner Turmoil' is another raw song, this one goes for a rough vocal and sounds more like a demo than a finished song, whilst the next song 'Rebel Angels' has an early death metal sound.

An epic 11 minutes of awesome is next 'Waves Of Transparency' just has it all, slow and fast, weird and normal, various vocal styles and endless timing changes.
This one is the first to really stand out as "Avant-garde", the obvious choice of band to say this sounds like is early Celtic Frost.

'Megalomaniac Euphoria' ends with some fast and venomous vocals with drumming to match, this song seems to carry on the feel of the previous song without the quiet bits!

Rating 9/10
For fans of: Darkthrone, Satyricon, Celtic Frost, Mayhem

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