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In Lingua Mortua was started by Lars F. F. back in 1999. The music was inspired by a wide range of music – everything from Norwegian black metal of the 90’s to prog rock of the 70’s, to jazz of the 50’s, to folk, country, classical music, electronica/trip-hop to film music (film noir and horror in particular) and so on…

The first album, “Bellowing Sea – Racked by Tempest” consists of 8 tracks (about 50 minutes) and was created in 1999/2000. Recordings began in the summer of 2000. Lyrically it’s a mix of Van der Graaf Generator’s “A Plague of Lighthouse keepers” from their 1971 album “Pawn hearts”, Dante’s “Inferno” and Homer’s “Odyssey.” With him he got Uruz (from Urgehal and Vulture Lord) on drums, Marius Glenn Olaussen (from Asmegin) on guitar, Trondr Nefas (from Urgehal and Vulture Lord) on vocal, Raymond Håkenrud (from Asmegin) on additional guitar, Kristian
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IN LINGUA MORTUA albums / top albums

IN LINGUA MORTUA Bellowing Sea - Racked by Tempest album cover 3.55 | 3 ratings
Bellowing Sea - Racked by Tempest
Symphonic Black Metal 2007
IN LINGUA MORTUA Salon des Refusés album cover 4.00 | 3 ratings
Salon des Refusés
Black Metal 2010


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IN LINGUA MORTUA Bellowing Sea - Racked by Tempest

Album · 2007 · Symphonic Black Metal
Cover art Buy this album from MMA partners
Conor Fynes
'Bellowing Sea - Racked By Tempest' - In Lingua Mortua (6/10)

In Lingua Mortua is a Norwegian black metal band led by Lars Fredrik Frøislie, a man better known for his contributions to the Scandinavian symphonic prog scene than anything traditionally grim or frostbitten. Although he may be considered to be something of an outsider given his status as a prog musician, Frøislie and company perform a fairly convincing take on Norwegian black metal here. The music is well-performed, but painfully typical of the modern Norwegian black metal scene. Despite some interesting steps attempted to set In Lingua Mortua's sound apart from their compatriots however, 'Bellowing Sea - Racked By Tempest' does not pass as being much more than a clone of the once- great Dimmu Borgir.

Although Norway may be best known in black metal for a string of controversial crimes and classic albums from the early 90's, the bleak sound of the black metal second wave has generally given way to something more polished, melodic, and less offensive to the masses. Although the merits and demerits of this evolution could be talked about for weeks, it's clear that the sound is no longer aimed towards being completely dark and obscure. Some bands- like Dimmu Borgir and Ihsahn- have prospered under these new conditions, releasing stuff that rivals, if not surpasses what they first did. Of course, there are now legions of copycat acts, and despite their talent, this is an unfortunate pigeonhole I fear In Lingua Mortua falls into with 'Bellowing Sea'. Like Dimmu Borgir, In Lingua plays a highly refined style of black metal that gets infused with the undertones of a symphonic orchestra. Although the orchestra itself is programmed, there are instruments playing in 'Bellowing Sea' that are quite irregular for black metal, including the saxophone, violin, and flute. For the short amounts in which these instruments are used, they contrast the heavier black metal elements quite nice, but they are used too scarcely to effectively change my view of the album.

Although a programmed orchestra can often range from being cheesy to downright terrible, the orchestrations here are rich and effective. Frøislie is evidently a veteran of the 'symphonic' sound, even regardless of his history with progressive acts White Willow and Wobbler. Although all of the seasonings show plenty of potential, it is the core black metal sound of In Lingua Mortua that feels a little lackluster. The music is played with precision and refinement, and there are plenty of synth arrangements to give the guitars a greater feeling of depth.Although a polished production is usually not an issue, here, the incredibly clear sound leaves little to the imagination, and while In Lingua Mortua has many of the things I love in black metal- eerie keyboards and guitar melodies, for example- the way they are tossed together screams emulation over innovation.

IN LINGUA MORTUA Bellowing Sea - Racked by Tempest

Album · 2007 · Symphonic Black Metal
Cover art Buy this album from MMA partners
"Emperor" gone progressive?

In Lingua Mortua boasts a sound not too dissimilar from Emperor (Anthems To The Welkin At Dusk era) and even Dimmu Borgir (Enthrone Darkness Triumphant era), but not as bombastic and with all those symphonic elements, and somewhat more ferocious. However, they do not settle for mere repetitive, unoriginal black metal, as I hear well structured composition and a progression within the tracks, developing the musical "story-line", coming up with more ideas as they go, making for an entertaining as well as an interesting listen. This could be described as a progressive form of black metal - maintaining its ferociousness, its raw power, the guitar riffs and vocal style, while adding the nuances of complexities to the song structure, varied instrumentation (sax, flute, keyboards of various kinds, violin, sound samples to complement the basic metal instrumentation) and an overall creativeness that is not always found in black metal bands (whether it be the old school raw BM or the symphonic black metal). However, I do feel they could have made more use of the "ammunition" that was at their disposal: more use of the sax, violin and flute among others. In their website it says that the music is inspired by "everything from Norwegian black metal of the 90's to prog rock of the 70's, to jazz of the 50's, to folk, country, classical music, electronica/trip-hop to film music (film noir and horror in particular) and so on."; I personally did not hear all of those in there (and I do like the description, but I feel that the album does not deliver that exactly) but I will say that the album is varied; broad in its scope and exciting.

Lars Fredrik Frøislie (keyboards, vocals, bass and samples; producer and engineer; music written by him and lyrics where not taken from Dante, Homer and Hammill) is varied in his musical output: He is also involved with prog rock band White Willow (which has now been put on hold) and black/folk metal band Asmegin (who's future is also unknown). This project he leads found him on the extreme metal side again (he composed this back in 1999-2000), combining the creativeness and sophistication of a progressive band (there's even a mellotron here!), and the ferocity, intensity and aggression of the extreme metal camp (though the latter is the dominant characteristic here, the main order of the day).

The album is quite dense, rich in sound, and given this and the length of the tracks, at the end of the album I feel as if I finished a long tiring journey, but an enjoyable one. If you fancy listening to a black metal release, but not of the bland unimaginative kind; with many intricacies, complexities, interesting shifts and rich sound, then this album should quench you thirst.


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