Friday, 3 November 2017

Heir - Au peuple de l'abîme

HEIR - Au peuple de l'abîme (LADLO Productions - CD 2017)
The way this album begins, with absolutely throat cutting, vicious riff and insanely blasting drumming quickly caught my attention. If I didn't know, I would certainly think that I listen to another Icelandic black metal sensation from Terratur Possessions, as atmosphere and quality wise this opening song is very alike. But no, it's nothing Icelandic, but a French band - so, from pretty damn great black metal scene also. Here's Heir with their debut full length album "Au peuple de l'abîme", released through Les Acteurs de l'Ombre Productions. Yeah, one my favourite black metal labels and another great release from them. I can definitely say so, not only about LADLO, but also about "Au peuple de l'abîme". I know Heir already from the 2016's split In Cauda Venenum / Heir / Spectrale. As far as I remember, I enjoyed their music there, although it wasn't so strictly black metal influenced, but more like progressive, experimental post / extreme metal sort of stuff. Well, with songs like "Au siecle des siecles", Heir sounds much more malicious and aggressive than on the split CD. And much more black metal, what I like a lot. 
But they do merge together different styles of music, so along with black metal there's plenty of dissonant riffs, long instrumental parts, post / drone stuff, etc. I love that overwhelming heaviness, which comes from almost every riff on this album, whether the tempo is neckbreaking fast or more doomy. I love how Heir keeps the balance between all these various styles and emotions, even if sometimes the contrast can be quite big. But damn, that's what I love about this record - that it's so unpredictable. I love the most furious and fastest fragments the most, but there's something truly mesmerizing about the slower parts also. I am truly surprised by the quality of the songwriting, how great riffs could be found here, how well it all has been putted together and arranged and how intriguing these 40 minutes of music were. Heir has plenty of great, but uncommon ideas, what makes this album stand out even among other so-called post / black metal records. At the same time, I am grateful that they haven't push these borders too far from the traditional means, in result we get a very straight forward and vicious, intense music. Give a listen to songs like  "L'Heure d'Helios" and "Au siecle des siecles", which probably are my favourites, and judge yourself. 
Well, what else can I say... Albums like "Au peuple de l'abîme" may not be for traditionalists, for people, who would rather only listen to the more primeval and archaic forms of black metal. Heir belongs to the group of bands, which dare to do something a bit different, but do so in great style. I am happy to know such albums and it's always a pleasure to listen to them. After the truly spectacular album from Au Dessus this may be my favourite release from LADLO of the recent months. Strongly recommended. 
Standout tracks: "L'Heure d'Helios", "Au siecle des siecles" 
Verdict: 80/100 

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