Exclusive Premiere: The Way To Light – Hollow Roots

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After daring splits with America’s unknown, his journey starts anew with a second full-length album. From Horders to Crawl, to Feral and Wrecca – everything since the first album “That Place Now Forgotten” have included others. The Way To Light is Austin Rathmell’s dark folk meets ambient solo-project. He is now back to serve you with an album that strays into the wilderness completely, it is titled “Cleansing Silence” and with it he enters a whole new phase in his artistry. For the first time he gives more room to the ambiance to speak for itself, and takes away a little more of the acoustic elements which he held dearly within his other releases. It is a darker and more frightful environment that he sets ablaze with his uncompromising ambient. One thing can be said about it and that is; oh how he borders on the gleefulness of dark ambient, though his harshness yet not be mastered.

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The length of his tracks continue to increase and leave more to the imagination. We’re astray in the wildness that is urbanity, but he leads us back across the plateau and into the forest. We are in desperate need to be connected with whom we came from. Our roots are in need of rejuvenation. His voice contributes to speed up the changes within the sound-scape he’s working in. There’s a calmness but also urgency to each voice he whispers. According to himself, this is what he wanted to conceive with his forthcoming release:

Cleansing Silence is an ode to that which can only exist in a solace of silence. Where other humans vanish and all that is left is your narrow path, you will see light. You will see. Yourself. You will see. All.

A solid blend between acoustic dark folk and atmospheric ambience, more so than ever before. Each track has its importance, whether an ever endless drone or layers of acoustic work, each note, each word, a mere thread in a cloak of this album.

His second album will be self-released on CD and distributed through Neuropa. The second pressing of this album will become available on vinyl, but I will not reveal where it might turn up. Time will tell. You can now listen to a track, exclusively from this forthcoming release, titled “Hollow Roots” – the second track on this album – on Repartiseraren. Stream it down below. If you wish to buy it, you can do so on the 3rd of October either from Neuropa, or his own outlet Hollow Haven.

Beläten and Invisible Guy presents: Shadow Rite – A Beläten Mixtape!

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Beläten have long been a proponent of Invisible Guy, or at least as long as we’ve been collaborating with each other. Thomas Ekelund is the head of this gargantuan Swedish label. It seems larger then it is, but it actually is what it seems. Invisible Guy have been a proponent of Beläten, since it’s one of the best and most exquisite labels today. It also makes me proud that it comes out of Sweden, my homestead. Earlier, he’s mixed the mixtape “Visions and Light“. This mixtape is the second one in these unofficial “series“. With 50% forthcoming material that’s going out on Beläten later this year, mixed with the majestic wonders of aufnahme + wiedergabe, La Forme Lente, Malignant Records and Avant!. With a great feature, which you’ll enjoy – a world premiere for a Trepaneringsritualen track, which will be out on Malignant Records later this year. Dance in the flaming pyre, embrace the rites of power, thrown into barren landscapes – is your ego being annihilated, in the Shadow Rite.

Invisible Guy and Beläten constitute some of the most powerful forces coming out of Sweden as we speak. Which brings me to introduce this collaboration with Beläten to you people, so that you can enjoy some exclusive songs from forthcoming releases. But do also enjoy those other songs that have been carefully selected to be featured in this mixtape. His legacy returns to my sphere once again, as his selection empowers the slumbering soul of the awaited Autumn. You will find the tracklist down below, links to Beläten and what ever you can and will find.

Shadow Rite – A Beläten Mixtape

01. Blitzkrieg Baby — Half Pig Half Man (Beläten, Forthcoming)
02. Feuerbahn — Triumphwagen (Aufnahme+Wiedergabe)
03. Dmitry Distant — System Control (Beläten, Forthcoming)
04. Michael Idehall — Snake Messiah [Distel Remix] (Beläten, Forthcoming)
05. L’Avenir — Falling Like The Snow II (Beläten, Forthcoming)
06. Makina GirGir — Oedipus Fin (La Forme Lente)
07. Női Kabát — Make Room! Make Room! (Aufnahme+Wiedergabe)
08. Grand Mal x — Tricks Of A Trade (Beläten, Forthcoming)
09. Sebastian Melmoth — Skurwysyn (Self-released, Beläten cassette forthcoming)
10. Distel — White Soldier (Beläten, Forthcoming)
11. Veil Of Light — Light (Beläten)
12. Lebabon Hanover — Gallowdance (Aufnahme+Wiedergabe)
13. Lakes — The Oldest Place (Avant!)
14. Trepaneringsritualen — Åkallan: Mímir (Excerpt) (Malignant, Forthcoming)
15. Carrion Sunflower — Wish For Death (Beläten, Forthcoming)

Beläten is looking forward to a hectic fall with great releases from Sutekh Hexen, Nordvall/Vainio, Grand Mal x, Dmitry Distant, Blitzkrieg Baby, Johan G. Winther, Distel, L’Avenir and Sebastian Melmoth, with even more epic plans for the year of 2014 e.v.

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Interview with James Light of the Die Song label!

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Die Song is a label that I actually got into by an accident. I slowly scrolled by on Facebook and found that one of my friends there liked this label. I imminently decided to check it out and was strangely attracted to the aesthetics of it. They were dark, they were somewhat nihilistic – almost on the verge. The first thing I got into was Carrion Sunflower, which had released their album “The Romantic Youth Of Jesus“. At first I was startled when I listened to it, and I couldn’t really fathom who would be into it. But after a few listens, it actually grew on me. James Light is the man behind this label, and it’s a label that is situated in the United States. He’s also released a split between Fistula and Radiation SIckness, which could be titled as the second release by this label. So, therefore, I decided to get in touch with him and ask him if he was interested in being interviewed. Now we’re here, with an in-depth interview in front of us. I asked him about the future releases, the meaning of his aesthetics, his craftsmanship, relations to other labels and many more questions. I hope you’re going to get your questions answered, and I hope you’d be as intrigued, if not more – as I was when I first stumbled upon Die Song.

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Promo: Various Artists – Rites Ov Summer

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The Salzburgian label Rainberg Verlag has just released a six-tracked compilation titled “Rites Ov Summer“, featuring completely new songs from Jännerwein, Solblot, Truthful Fields, Moineau, Vurgart and Bund Neuland. Celebrating summer, celebrating the warmth, now that is is slowly becoming Autumn. This is a must have for everyone that like the folkish tunes of differentiating European acts, it is also for everyone that likes their music to be free. At least, for now, the compilation is free to download. But I suggest you pinch in with money if you like what you are hearing. Stream and listen to it down below.

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The best releases of the year 2012! (Part I)

It’s been a very interesting year when it comes to music. There have been a great amount of releases that have been up there with the greatest of yesteryear. Since everybody seems to be doing these lists, I will join in on the fun and recommend you the best releases of this year. Some of those releases might’ve been what I’ve reviewed on this blog and some others might be releases that I haven’t reviewed yet. I think it’s fun to do these lists nevertheless and hope that you will be with me next year too, as I will be continuing with my quest to shine a light on good and unintentionally obscure gems that seem to be passing by in the speed of light, only getting picked up by the smaller blogs like mine and other blogs. I will also be doing other lists that will be turning up in the days ahead of us and I might actually do something “big” for a change, just to celebrate this year’s passing. Welcome to Part I which in an unorthodox manner, displays the four best releases of this year.

dalet-cover4. Various Artists – A Somatic Response

A compilation from the wonderful label Beläten. It’s been with me since many months back and was probably the first compilation that I ever reviewed. There is something interesting in the way the artists were compiled on this compilation, it seems like it took a long time for Thomas to sort them out and place them in the right spot. Rightfully so, it also made it a whole lot better and it felt like it had been worked on for quite some time. Even though the music at times might not have been what I expected, I could hear that it reeked of quality. There was basically nothing wrong with it and it was a suitable piece of art which hopefully will get what it deserves in the future. I think its one of the greatest compilations of this year and therefore its included in the first batch of the best releases. If you haven’t already heard it, I suggest you do. I would also like to quote a little bit from the review I did on it:

With a synthesizer brain, you can’t go insane.

solblot-fc3b6r-mig-finns-ingen-vc3a4rld3. Solblot – För Mig Finns Ingen Väg Från Hemmets Dörr

An adaptation of the wonderful poems that Verner Von Heidenstam wrote in the end of the 19th century. If anything, this album should be and is a part of Swedish cultural heritage. It also broadens the horizon of neofolk, since they’ve managed to put their own approach to the music and the genre as a whole. They’ve outdone themselves when it boils down to it, since they made a lot of variation in between the different song and it is noticeable that they have what it takes to put Sweden on that scene. I don’t think any other band in that particular genre (at least from Sweden) have managed to stay that original and still make it. The album is a milestone of their discography but also as a whole, it really enlightens the aspects that might be forgotten nowadays and heighten them to the max. Hopefully they’ll move on to create yet another album that can withstand the toll of time, as I certainly hope that this album will, because its a positive outreach and insight into both cultural and musical aspects of Sweden. I would like to quote a bit from my review of their album (unfortunately only in Swedish):

Jag hoppas att de tänker ta någon av de andra klassiska svenska dikterna och göra något av det, själv tror jag i mitt stilla sinne att Heidenstam hade varit väldigt stolt över detta om han hade levt bland oss idag. Ett riktigt bra album och förmodligen något man kommer att se tillbaka på, när Solblot cementerat sig själva ytterligare, och kunna kalla den för “en klassiker“.

2721236100-12. TSTI – Evaluations

One of the most original albums to be released this year. The throwback to the wonderful 80’s music that I love so much have also made a mark on TSTI. His latest album evaluations is a good reminder of how much greater some of the synth-pop and darkwave could be. It took me a while to find it and I even conducted an interview with him about his music. I also reviewed his album, which was a listening experience that actually could describe this year very well in every sense. He managed to pinpoint the exact things about this year, musically, that made it suck so hard. But there was always some sense of relief, even though there wasn’t much of it to begin with. His music takes out the best in me and riddles in nostalgia, which helps me remind myself of how things were before. Surely a milestone album when it comes to that genre and a very interesting addition to a pretty suffering style of genres. The analog dimension of it makes it even more worthwhile to listen to and I sincerely recommend it. I should also quote something from my review of it:

I love how the synths start sounding like dolphins communicating below surface, even though its almost a few seconds. I believe that is the essence of S. Smith, he can both be very complex at hand but when you think about it – he’s also managed to keep a basic edge to what he’s doing.

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It’s not hard to realize why I chose this album. Since I’ve listened through it, I picked it up once again and started listening. Every time I listen to it, it blows my mind and it’s probably one of the most original albums I’ve heard in a very long time. I must also say that it was hard to review such a masterpiece, because you didn’t know where you should go and you didn’t know what to say. But I must say that I completely loved the theme of the album and I tried my hardest to describe it in a way that would be suitable. Nothing can really touch this, not even the release that is on second place in this review. The amount of quirkiness, the sincerity and the sheer complexity of the music at hand left me indecisive about including it into the list, just because it blows every other record out of the water. I would even go so far as to include an excerpt from my review of their album, which leaves nothing else to be said:

They’ve managed to fit in so many emotions into this and they’ve managed to actually keep the music alive, the lyrical content excellent and everything else top notch. Everyone involved with this have outdone themselves and I’d like to say that his is one of the best albums I’ve heard this year. It absolutely smacks many other albums away from the first place and crowns itself.

Which, concludes this years (Part I) list of the best releases. I wish you a Merry Christmas!