For several times France has proven to be an authentic black metal foundry, especially Les Acteurs de l’Ombre Productions (LADLO) who graced all of us with amazing releases. In 2017, “Au peuple de l’abîme” was issued.
The first full-length album from the Ocitanian quartet “Heir”, who had already shown their face with both a split and an EP, is no exception.
Here’s a quick run through “Au peuple de l’abîme”.
The first track immediately bursts with an unexpected amount of violence covered with leads that add to this unsettling sensation. It’s just blasting black metal riffing throughout the song, this is until they start showing their sludgier side.
The first time listening to them several things stand out: atmosphere, sludginess and intensity. Even when it slows down it’s still powerful. The vocals, at first, might seem off especially considering the background, but once they click it’s a perfect fit especially in some of the wider and slower parts.
There are two tracks that definitely stand out: one of them is “l’heure d’helios” with its amazing atmosphere, where the leads are like hands grabbing and pulling us to their nightmare only to give room to blasting heavy sections filled with hypnotic and almost drone-like moments. Listening to this song is like being in a constant state of trance. The other one is “l’ame des foules”, for it has the same ability to swipe us off our feet in a completely different manner. It moves back and forth between an almost atmospheric black metal vibe, hypnotic groove and drone. This song stands out because, although it goes through all these stages, it’s still cohesive and has flow.
Production-wise, the leads stand out once again with a wide and immersive quality. Sonically speaking, its a good balance between “clear” and “dirty” – a common feature in Post Black Metal.
To conclude, although there are some tempo and style changes that can feel a bit abrupt, Heir in this album manages to stand out in a genre that is becoming quite saturated, by pushing its boundaries with an amazing full-length.
Highlights: l’heure d’helios, l’ame des foules