Madeline v. F.
Being a fulltime creative is great and all, but I also work about 60 hrs/week and a lot of it is not fun. When it's the middle of the night, and I'm exhausted, and alone in my studio with a looming deadline and a painting that's already taken so much of my time that it feels like a bad marriage, this is the kind of album that keeps me going.
Favorite track: Came.
Come to think of it, I own very few purely instrumental metal albums, so to say that Consolamentum is among the best of them could seem like an underhanded compliment. However, it is hard to imagine how vocals might improve this stunning combination of drone-leaning sludge and post-metal, and it is not a question that we need answered. Each of these five journeys (not songs) takes a while to get going, but become absolutely engrossing once they do. So heavy, so thoughtful, so ominous!
Favorite track: Alètheia.
Only their 4th album in 20+ years, these French instrumentalists clearly like to bide their time. Evident in these five Godzilla-sized tracks of dense, devastating Post-Metal. The tone is tempered but apocalyptic with scything guitars cutting through the elephantine sludge like an air raid siren guiding towards shelter and respite. The lamenting 'Came', is particulalry breathtaking when the band detonate around the 7 minute mark. Their 2 drums/3 guitar attack is absolutely monumental.
Favorite track: Came.
"Consolamentum", the new album from Year Of No Light.
Out now via Pelagic Records.
YEAR OF NO LIGHT are celebrating their 20th anniversary as a band this year. On the occasion of this, we are releasing not only their new album “Consolamentum”, but a wooden box set containing their entire discography of 5 studio albums, several split EPs, and the collaboration with Belgian composer Dirk Serries from the 'Live At Roadburn' recordings, on 12 vinyl records.
Sometimes adding more weight to something that's already heavy feels like relief. When the staggering build-up of layer on layer of guitars and synths towards the end of 'Aletheia' reaches its boiling point, when the tension and drama become too suffocating to bear, the sudden discharge into the following upbeat part, based on a single power chord gallopping away at the speed of no light feels strangely alleviative. This is the moment when the feet leave the ground, and the bones of the arms of the heretic crack, being pulled up in a strappado behind his back. One of the most agonizing and arguably one of the greatest moments in heavy music of the past decade.
YEAR OF NO LIGHT's lengthy, sprawling compositions of towering walls of guitars and sombre synths irradiate a sense of dire solemnity and spiritual gravity, and couldn't be a more fitting soundtrack for such grim medieval scenarios. But there is also the element of absolution, regeneration, elevation, transcendence in the face of death. Consolamentum is dense, rich and lush and yet somehow feels starved and deprived.
It comes as no surprise that ever since the beginning of their career, the band have had an obsession for the fall of man and salvation through darkness. The term “consolamentum” describes the sacrament, the initiation ritual of the Catharic Church, which thrived in Southern Europe in the 12th - 14th century – a ritual that brought eternal austereness and immersion in the Holy Spirit.
“There's a thread running through all of our albums”, says the band, collectively “an exploration of the sensitive world that obeys a certain telos, first fantasized ("Nord") and reverberated ("Ausserwelt"), then declaimed as a warning ("Tocsin"). The deeper we dig, the more the motifs we have to unveil appear to us. Yes, it's a bit gnostic. This album is invoked after the Tocsin, it's the epiphany of the Fall”.
With debut album Nord (2006) and sophomore release Ausserwelt (2010), the band made themselves a name in the European avant-metal scene. Extensive tours of Europe, North America and Russia in 2013 and 2014, including two appearances at Roadburn festival, Hellfest and a spectacular performance in a 17th Century fortress in the Carpathian mountains introduced them to a broader and quickly growing international audience.
The cinematic scope of their music implies that Year Of No Light are a group of artists that pay a great deal of attention to their visual representation, from the classy album artworks and merch designs to the carefully designed lighting design of their live show. Behind this stands a real, personal interest of the band members in historic cinema. This has led the French 6 piece to create a stunning obituary-soundtrack for C. T. Dreyer’s 1932 movie “Vampyr” in 2013, and an original score for Jean Rouch’s 1955 short film “Les Maîtres Fous” which the band performed at Musée du Quai Branly in Paris. The track “Désolation” off Tocsin appeared on the soundtrack of the movie "Jessica forever". Besides these ventures into film music, the band at times took on the structure of an open collective and collaborated with contemporary French artists such as Christian Vialard for a video installation reinterpretaing Yves Klein's Monotone Symphony.
With their seminal 3rd album Tocsin, released in 2013, Year Of No Light reached the peak of their career thus far – a logical decision that Consolamentum was made with the same team again: recorded and mixed by Cyrille Gachet at Cryogene in Begles / Bordeaux, mastered by Alan Douches at West West Side. “We wanted this album to sound as organic and analog as possible”, comments the band. “All tracks were recorded live. The goal was to have the most natural, warm and clean takes possible, to give volume to the dynamics of the songs. We aimed to have a production with a singular personality.”
For the adept listener, Consolamentum seems to be venturing deeper into the dark and claustrophobic spheres explored on Tocsin – but the band doesn't conceive of the evolution of their music in a linear way, as it would be apparent from looking at their discography. “It’s more a matter of sonic devotion. Music against modern times. Year Of No Light” is above all a praxis. We wanted intensity, trance, climax and threat, all of them embedded in a bipolar and mournful ethos”.
Consolamentum is huge, poignant, frightening, sublime, smothering and cathartic – and, much like its predecessor, “audacious, memorable and supremely confident." (Decibel magazine).
Year Of No Light formed in 2001 in Bordeaux (Fr). With their first album, Nord, YONL have proven adept a shifting seamlessly
between genres, balancing post-rock, sludge, somber psychedelics and crushing dark shoegaze. In 2010, now backed by two drums, 3 guitars, the band released its second album, Ausserwelt, oscillating between drone, doom, post-rock, black metal and progressive music....more
supported by 392 fans who also own “Consolamentum”
“Post-metal” can often be guilty of merely being loud and lingering. Cult of Luna totally dodge this pitfall. I think I most enjoyed the many textures throughout this album; percussive items beyond drums, emotive synth swells, untraditional instruments. Cult of Luna create a totally unique flavor to express their musical colors. I loved the powerful CHURN that swirled through much of this album, from the beginning horns and drums, carried forward by an excellent rhythm section. pinkytheent
supported by 322 fans who also own “Consolamentum”
Par rapport au monstrueux A Dawn to Fear, The Raging River est un album qui paraît presque raisonnable. Sauf qu’il est dans la continuité de Cult of Luna, c’est-à-dire pas raisonnable du tout. Comme bande-son de fin du monde, il se pose un peu là: à l’instar de son titre, il va balloter l’auditeur entre cailloux, troncs arrachés et débris divers. (Chroniqué sur https://alias.erdorin.org) Stéphane Gallay