There’s been a fair amount of teeth gnashing and intermittent bots of throwing ourselves through the air against walls in our gaff since we finally get off our lazy hides and put this beauty on the turntable.
The gnashing of teeth due in the main to discovering the small though painfully consequential fact that this lot have somehow managed to sneak past a release in the shape of their self titled two track 7” for Public Guilt – the blighters. While our strange re-acquaintance with the walls in our place are borne of the fact that we are utterly smitten by this colossal unholy sounding four track hybrid opus of kraut, dark psych and blood chilled industrialism.
‘Descension’ is the debut Aluk Todolo full length release – limited to just 500 vinyl copies via the rather tasty Riot Season imprint who are it has to be said garnering something of a reputation for being latent spotters of taste makers (in our gaff anyway) having just blown us away with the latest double vinyl outing for the very excellent Shit ’n’ Shine (a review is imminent) as well as offering safe haven for the of those Jap psych overlords Acid Mothers Temple as well as in recent memory outings for the Skull Defekts and Black Boned Angel (which I have to hear and now come highly recommended).
The French trio who are made up of members of occultist / black metal ensembles previously unknown to us (now isn’t that familiar) Diamatregon and Vediog Svaor have in ’Descension’ delivered one of the early runners for psyche debut of the year. Loosening up on their black metal upbringing ’descension’ is grimly layered, the opening sequences of ’obedience’ envelope the listener in a sinew tightening tenseness routinely marked and scarred by the delicate drift of an apocalyptically monastic and bleak monochromatic backdrop before the frenzied scourge of hammer headed primordial kraut grooves are unleashed with blood letting intent. Unrelenting, inescapable and impeccably claustrophobic, this caustic armoury provides the setting for a serious power driven locked down head fuck of some measure beset with a raging frontal assault of howling feedback skree, acute no wave dialects and doom lashed foreboding and retribution.
The ice dripped looping skin jangling paranoia of ‘burial ground’ drops the temperature to near chilling, ominous and skulking this heavily set bleak and blankly slice of fraught post punk taps disturbingly in to the monolithic atmospheres of Joy Division at their most overtly hollowed and here we are thinking ’dead souls’ and ’decades’ whilst intermittently being subjected to scorch marks resulting from hostile fuzz furies that neatly blends into…..
…’woodchurch’ which annoyingly our spell checker keeps trying to change to Woodchuck (whatever happened to them?) is as eerie as it gets is replete with life force evaporating drone montages that mooch restlessly like some kind of pulsating sonic black hole sucking dry any semblance of light – think LaBradford in a face off with Growing.
Its left to the parting ’disease’ to provide the set with its curtain closing centrepiece – deliciously set off and primed by some stunning dust ridden fuzzed up snaking blues accents as though a smoking Bill Horist had lifted some neat side winding riff tricks from Ry Cooder before being dragged backwards into darkening oppressive haze of stricken industrial treated drone dub collages whipped straight out of the arse pocket of an early career Roy Montgomery. Fierce some stuff.
All at once brooding and brutal ‘descension’ is an uncompromising ceremony of caustic generic engineering and an absolute must have record collection addition.
Further listening –
from February 2008