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7/10 Chaim
 

REGARDE LES HOMMES TOMBER - Exile - CD - Les Acteurs de l'Ombre Productions - 2015

French Regarde Les Hommes Tomber has seemingly decided to shift their sound (permanently?) from the predominant hardcore punk aesthetics established on its excellent self-titled debut, towards a more distinctive black metal traditionalism inked with the sign of post-modernism. But being a band owning strong atmospheric inclinations, these guys have not neglected the very ability to maintain high quality and massive ambiance which is usually the exclusive domain of atmospheric hardcore/sludge outfits, and now the band's music sounds even more epic and grand, having intros, outros, instrumental passages and colossal soundscapes any band would kill for.

The recording is sparse and airy, but quite tight, and the tracks are less-crowded and a notch less intense than before. However, the ambiance is still suffocating and the tunes captivating, but not due to stark originality or songwriting artistry, but rather due to the aforementioned intense atmosphere.

Sure, you can still notice the band's atmospheric hardcore roots peeping out from intangible holes in the musical plot; you can still hear the robust hardcore punk bass lines and the long instrumental passages a-la Neurosis and such, but in the end, the depraved and bizarre 'feel' the recording emanates warps and shifts the aesthetics (and the inevitable theatrics) towards the black metal paradigm, especially when weighing this album against the previous self-titled one.

The album's dark Biblical themes come to life, being resuscitated by the music itself, and this Old Testament-centric soundtrack renders those timeless stories evermore menacing and dramatic; the atmosphere conjures an intimidating and hopeless setting, against which all the wrongdoings of man - as told in those ancient texts - and their inevitable punishments are being acted, enacted, repeated and exercised. The music perpetuates and perfects the epic tale of dark deeds and heresy, brewed in a cauldron of shimmering tribal rhythms and enigmatic chants. It all sounds mythical, magical, and so much Biblical.

Expect at least a dozen repeated listening sessions before this album's grandeur and singularity will be dawning upon you; it wouldn't be easy, as Exile does tend not to impress initially with its slightly derivative choice of style, safe songwriting and atmospheric hardcore inclinations that seem like one of this era's musical bandwagons; but make no mistakes, this album IS unique, as it delivers some of the most glorious, devouring and enormous atmospheric moments ever recorded.

Recommended! (7/10)

 

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ISSUE 78
ALBUM REVIEWS

(A-B)  (B-D)  (D-G)  (G-K)  (K-M)  (M-P)  (P-S)  (S-ST)  (S-W)  (W-Z)

PROSPEKT
The Colourless

PYRAMIDS ON MAR...
Echo Cosmic

REGARDE LES HOM...
Exile

ROCK CANDY FUNK...
Groove Is King

SCARDUST
Shadow

SCHNELLERTOLLER...
X

SCHON, NEAL
Vortex

SECTION 37
Legion

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