Andreas Brandal returns with Hidden Persuaders, offering "Elegies and Curses", the project's third release after "The Bone Forest" and the homonymous debut on 2:00AM Tapes in 2014. The bleak and slow tempo heaviness of those previous releases appears now enhanced by the addition of a band-like instrumentation, where the extended use of guitar, bass and the ceremonial drumming of Børre Myklebust renew the industrial synth/ sampler combo, making "Elegies and Curses" the most concise and charged Hidden Persuaders album so far. The flawless pristine production makes the most intricate details to emerge from the densely saturated noise backdrops, the ceaseless pounding of heavy blows and the overall chilling and chaotic atmosphere which this album ultimately sinks into. Like the bastard son of early Einstürzende Neubauten and Norway's own Black Metal tradition, "Elegies and Curses" is a pure statement of undiluted sterness and Brandal's musicianship.
"With 'Elegies and Curses', Hidden Persuaders has created a beautifully horrifying collage of industrial soundscapes that utilize the tones and textures of black and drone metal to great effect."
"From the beginning of album opener “A Baptism of Shadows,” one can hear the fractured sounds of connections cutting in and out, chains rattling, and glass breaking, all over the constant throbbing of a simple yet effective ritualistic beat conjured up with repetitive drums, pulsing bass, and fuzzy, distorted guitar that more frequently conjures tones and textures than it does single notes or melodies. The pairing of conventional song structures with such alarming and confusing instrumentation makes for a listen that will excite fans of heavy metal’s more progressive side just as much as folks who worship the likes of NWW and Neubauten."
– Ben Handelman (Black Metal and Brews)
"Elegies and Curses is a masterfully heavy, downright disorienting release that skirts the outer edges of metal and plays it back through a filter that is somehow even more scary and fucked up than the trumped up tropes that it has come to embody."
– Ryan M. Hall (Tome To The Weather Machine)
“It’s rare to encounter an artist who can move between genres, but Andreas Brandal has been doing it for years. The only constant is the tone; he’s been called “the Norwegian master of the macabre,” and we don’t expect to hear a happy album from him anytime soon. (...) Brandal is a prolific artist, having participated in over a dozen groups in the last two decades. This being said, Elegies and Curses is one of his more powerful releases. The closing track is as black as black gets, so dark that one can barely intuit shade. We wouldn’t have it any other way.”
– Richard Allen (A Closer Listen)
released March 26, 2015
Written by Andreas Brandal.
Recorded at The Station, Bergen from September to December 2014.
Drums on 1, 2 and 4 by Børre Myklebust.
Artwork by øjeRum (oejerum.dk
Layout by C. Burius.
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