“The trick is to avoid all the bands that are bragging about genre breaking or how mind blowing they are and just listen to Oranssi Pazuzu”. This quote from Fenriz’s radio show couldn’t have been a better spot on statement for the phenomenon that is Finland’s Oranssi Pazuzu.
Since their inception, Oranssi Pazuzu has never been satisfied to stick with a formula. Each album has seen the band expand upon its previous incarnation and then, like a supernova, blow it up and transform again into something recognizable but completely new. With their first two albums, they slowly built a fuzz for their unique take on black metal’s pscyhedelia and despite using this genre as a platform it was their third album, Valonielu (2013), that solidified the band’s position as one of the most forward-thinking and interesting metal bands and gave purists a ran for their money. With press and fans praising the brilliance of that album, their live shows established them even more to the point where their live experience could be compared to the ones of Pink Floyd, Swans and Neurosis. And that’s coming from everybody that witnessed them on their tours and festivals performances all around Europe.
Their return on 2016 with their fourth album, Värähtelijä, gives the band much more room to diverge and explore the vast regions of hypnotic progressive psychedelia and the nebulous outer limits of Scandinavian black metal. Songs explode with radiant ultraviolet color and plunge into the deep black darkness of innermost consciousness. If ‘Valonielu’ was the creation of a universe, ‘Värähtelijä’ is the magnification and expansion of its infinite boundaries. With the album ending up on many best albums of the year lists, and not only in the metal circles, 2017 will be the busiest year for the band on stage starting with the “Mental Possessed Tour” where the band brings with them 2 of their peers, Aluk Todolo and Cobalt (on their first European tour) on selected days and making this tour not to be missed!
The “Mental Possessed Tour” will also coincide with the reissues of Oranssi Pazuzu’s backcatalogue including their first 2 albums, which have been sold out since their release, an EP consisting of the band’s material from their 2010 split with Candy Cane and also a limited 10” vinyl with two unreleased songs, which will be sold only on their live dates!
Not meant for genre purists, Oranssi Pazuzu are on a trip all their own; modern electric pioneers on an expedition to unlock the keys to the hidden spaces all around and inside us.
ALUK TODOLO is an instrumental power trio performing Occult Rock since 2004. Their music is a methodical exploration of the powers of musical trance. Part occult black metal fiend and part snide kraut menace, the band conjures rabid obsessive rhythms and abyssal disharmonic guitars, subliminal spiritualist vibrations and bizarre, magick summonings. ALUK TODOLO reduces psychedelic improvisation to a bare, telluric instrumentation, in which dry, spare percussion grievously mines the scrapes, shrieks and shimmer of mutated guitar and bass. The band’s sound is monolithic and stabbing, hypnotic but unpredictable, minimalist yet teeming: a dangerous, noxious coil of all things black.
The name ALUK TODOLO was brought back from a mountainous region of South Sulawesi in Indonesia, it’s an ancient religion with animist beliefs meaning «the Way of the Ancestors». The band toured in USA in 2009 and 2012, Southern Europe in May 2010 (France, Switzerland, Spain, Portugal), Northern Europe in April 2011 with MENACE RUINE (France, UK, Belgium, Netherlands, Germany, Denmark, Sweden, Czech republik, Switzerland) and Eastern Europe in May 2013 with the one man band LUSSURIA from New York (Belgium, Netherlands, Czech Republik, Poland, Austria, Hungaria, Croatia, Solvenia, Italia, France), around the Alps in June 2016 with SUM OF R from Switzerland (France, Switzerland, Germany, Poland, Czech Republik, Hungary, Austria). ALUK TODOLO opened for FAUST (German krautrock pioneers) in New York in October 2009. They have been invited by SUNN O))) to play the Roadburn Festival 2011 in the Tilburg – Netherlands and opened for them in June 2012. They played festivals such as Incubate (Netherlands), Stella Natura (usa), Dark Bombastic Evening (Romania), Mega Therion (Finland), Colmar Jazz Off (France), Luff (Switzerland), le Guess Who ? (Netherlands), Sonic Protest (France), Funkelfug (Austria), Amplifest (Portugal), Chaos Descends (Germany), and will play in 2017 the Stardust IV (New York USA) and the Roadburn (Netherlands).
An archive collection of rare recordings from their first decade will be released in 2017 as well as the 4 albums on tape on Seratusribu records from Indonesia.
Bandcamp (online discography): http://
War Metal is the most fitting title Cobalt could choose to kick off their career. There is a deep sense of struggle and urgency, a devastating cause that left absolute carnage through its path that the band’s music radiated since the time of their inception. Cobalt, as nature, is red in tooth and claw, and there is no desire of hiding it.
This struggle, this unbroken will to battle and conflict was peaked with the genre-defining Eater of Birds, a testament to the spirit of the US black metal scene. Pouring with aggression and oozing with a primal energy, Cobalt showcased a unique blend of bitter black metal, a traditional approach that was rehashed and in turn rejuvenated. The additions of Americana, folk and noise do not necessarily provide an experimental approach to black metal, but rather a different interpretation of its historic, pure form. The imagery of Hemingway on the cover of Gin makes perfect sense, depicting the literary background of Gin and its influence on Cobalt’s ethos: the perfection of one’s craft, the certainty and conviction to one’s belief and the stoic perspective.
Hemingway’s famously writes: “The world breaks everyone, and afterward, some are strong at the broken places.” This could not be more true for Cobalt, who saw the departure of vocalist Phil McSorley in 2014. Mainman Erik Wunder did not allow this to become the end of the road for his black metal endeavors, and recruiting Charlie Fell (ex-Lord Mantis) has worked wonders for the band and the quality of their releases. In 2016 they proved that they belong at the very top of the food chain releasing what is their finest work in Slow Forever, a double album filled with all the elements that their glorious past has produced, but also with an eye staring at the future and the path that lays ahead. This is Cobalt at its best. Uncompromising, relentless, hungry, constantly hunting and out for blood.