"Mort" (Candlelight; 2006)

Reviewed by Mike SOS

Avant-garde French black metal troupe Blut Aus Nord's latest excruciatingly haunting offering, "Mort," delves the listener into pits of despair wrapped in drunken dissonance. 

With its unique array of black metal brazen with woozy swirls of guitar feedback and industrial-tinged bleakness fully in tow, this eight-track endeavor provides a sinister mindtrip whose chills will encumber your bones long after the stop button has been pushed on the CD player. 

Not for the faint of heart or unadventurous spirit. 

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"The Work Which Transforms God" (Candlelight; 2004)

Reviewed by Christopher J. Kelter

I think my only experience with a French metal band has been the power metal band Dream Child; and that experience was nothing to write home about. Lo and behold, another French band has graced my presence and it is the black metal band Blut Aus Nord. 

Blut Aus Nord is a longstanding underground favorite and the band has a cult following; additionally, the band is widely hailed as being innovators in the black metal genre by those that follow the underground. And it figures I don’t know anything about them. However, it doesn’t take more than five minutes of this 51-minute disc to convince you that you are listening to something special.

Black metal is far too often split into two camps: the traditional style (think Darkthrone) and symphonic black metal (think Dimmu Borgir). Once in a while a black metal band will come along that pushes the boundaries into more modern territories (… and Oceans and Aborym being the two bands that I can think of at the moment), but even these new modern territories can sometimes feel forced and overwrought. The sound that Blut Aus Nord creates seems very natural; “The Work Which Transforms God” is a great example of music that conveys an unsettling eerie vibe and terror with complete ease.

“The Work Which Transforms God” is a stunning example of what black metal can be when it honors tradition and seeks new ways of expression. “The Work Which Transforms God” combines the cold feel of most black metal bands with the atmosphere and ambience that very few can dream of. Blut Aus Nord surge with creativity and a bleakness that few black metal bands can match. Throw in some industrial sounds and dark, droning noises as well as the traditional necro sound favored by black metal bands and you’ve got yourself a band and an album that will probably long be remembered as a classic.

I am loathe to compare Blut Aus Nord with any other band in the black metal genre, but on the basis of hearing “The Work Which Transforms God” I can comfortably say that Blut Aus Nord approach the kind of relevance that Emperor have enjoyed all these years. Also, very rarely can I say that heavy metal is the highest form of art let alone a black metal band’s efforts are like high art; but Blut Aus Nord come close to achieving this particular pinnacle of praise.

“The Work Which Transforms God” was originally released in 2003 by Appease Me Records, but is seeing its proper worldwide release via Candlelight Records.

“The Work Which Transforms God” was produced by Blut Aus Nord.

Blut Aus Nord: Vindsval, GhOsT, and W.d. Feld.

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Rating Guide:

A classic. This record will kick your ass.

Killer. Not a classic but it will rock your world.

So-so. You've heard better.

Pretty bad. Might make a nice coaster.

Self explanatory. Just the sight of the cover makes you wanna hurl.

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Copyright © 2007 by R. Scott Bolton. All rights reserved.
Revised: 25 Feb 2019 21:42:45 -0500.