Some albums out give me a ‘WTF’ moment before I’ve ever heard it, or even the band that made it previously. One such album is the third full-length album by Swiss black metal act Blutmond, which was released in 2012. Entitled The Revolution is Dead! and featuring a blindfolded and open-legged yet with no apparent genitalia nude female with a megaphone on the cover, it doesn’t exactly cut an image which screams black metal at me. To be honest, I’m not sure what sort of image it cuts, but I guess that’s the point given the direction Blutmond take black metal in.
Although Blutmond’s sound certainly contains black metal elements aplenty, they’re most definitely one of the most avant-garde bands in the genre first and foremost. You can’t really have any expectations of what a band like Blutmond will sound like; calling them avant-garde black metal is the most accurate and vague description of their music at the same time. What I do know is that The Revolution is Dead! is most certainly one of the most different sounding metal albums I’ve encountered this year. We’re most certainly not talking your run of the mill band when it comes to Blutmond.
Featuring a full time saxophonist in their line-up alongside a more traditional black metal band setup is only the beginning of Blutmond’s sound. The vocals are mostly growled, but not always in the raspy style associated with black metal. Some of the vocals sound closer to a crust punk style, the band having two vocalists, and there are also clean vocals, including some guest female vocals, some of which also go into a screaming style, which actually sounds pretty tortured. The album features a number of guest performers including Anna Murphy (Eluveitie), Managarm (Varg), Markus Baltes (Autumnblaze) and Fredy Schnyder (Nucleus Torn).
The result is something which sounds pretty crazy and random. A more traditional black metal part here, a thrashy riff there, layers of saxophone which add something of a bleak atmosphere to the whole thing and much more, more than I could ever accurately write about here. But that’s really the main appeal of it. It is different, which is of course exactly what being avant-garde is all about. Most definitely not an album for the impatient, and it will take several spins to even begin to work out what it’s all about, but The Revolution is Dead! has ultimately been a rewarding experience for me, and the creativity of the band is never in doubt from start to finish. It’s just one of those niche albums which I think will end up and love/hate thing for most listeners. Personally speaking I can’t say I like this as much as some of the other avant-garde metal I’ve come across, including Blutmond’s labelmates Akphaezya, but I appreciate what they made here and a great album tier rating is deserved. If you’re an adventurous soul when it comes to music, then I think Blutmond will be very worth you giving a shot.
(Originally written for Heavy Metal Haven (http://metaltube.freeforums.org/blutmond-the-revolution-is-dead-t2710.html))