Avant-garde Metal • Belgium
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The band is born in 2009 in Belgium with the reunion of singer Marie BILLY, guitar player Stéphane DUPONT, bass player Dimitri IANNELLO and drummer Tom MALMENDIER. Stéphane, main composer has played in various bands and styles, and Tom has played in the free Jazz scene. So you have a eclectic styles of music from metal, to post-rock and experimental with tortuous time signatures,dark and heavy atmospheres. The band has released 2 EP, "A Dispute to Redefine clearly frontiers between devils and Angels" (2010) and "Fishing for Ghosts" (2011) before releasing his first self-title album in 2013.

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HELIUM HORSE FLY albums / top albums

HELIUM HORSE FLY Helium Horse Fly album cover 4.00 | 2 ratings
Helium Horse Fly
Avant-garde Metal 2013
HELIUM HORSE FLY Hollowed album cover 4.00 | 1 ratings
Avant-garde Metal 2019


HELIUM HORSE FLY A Dispute to Redefine Clearly Frontiers Between Devils and Angels album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
A Dispute to Redefine Clearly Frontiers Between Devils and Angels
Avant-garde Metal 2010
HELIUM HORSE FLY Fishing For Ghosts album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Fishing For Ghosts
Avant-garde Metal 2011

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Album · 2019 · Avant-garde Metal
Cover art Buy this album from MMA partners
siLLy puPPy
While it seemed as if they had fallen off the face of the Earth, the Belgian based HELIUM HORSE FLY from Liege returns after a six year gap following their 2013 eponymous debut and returns with an even noisier, darkened atmospheric hardcore and experimental slice of avant-garde post-metal with another disturbingly weird album cover and sound to match. This second full-length album HOLLOWED finds three members: Marie Billy (vocals), Stephane Dupont (guitar, keyboards, vocals) and Dimitri Iannello (bass) returning for a reprise however original drummer Bastien Dupont has been replaced with new percussionist Gil Chevigne.

HELIUM HORSE FLY emerged at the beginning of the decade with an extremely dark and disturbing sound that takes a spacey angular approach on post-metal with intense emotionally scarring atmospheric dark clouds blocking out the sun for a very surreal journey into some sort of tortured soul’s bleakest emotional outlook and with the black and white album art makes me think of the movie “The Elephant Man” for some reason. HOLLOWED picks up exactly where the band left off but takes all the elements into ever more extreme territories.

Musically speaking, the avant-garde elements remind me most of early Kayo Dot especially the twisted cacophonous dissonance of “Dowsing Anenome With Copper Tongue” as ominous guitar chords create a wall of frightening sound that finds Marie Billy’s half-sung lyrics in a state of anxiety in weirdly off-kilter counterpoints from the instrumental backdrop that finds the guitar, bass and drums all existing in their own little worlds while conspiring to create a very ruggedly dangerous greater sum of the parts. The title HOLLOWED is perfect as the music sounds like a rock band where all members have experienced lobotomies and only shades of black, white and gray remain after all the colors of the rainbow have been extinguished.

Rhythmically the band progresses like a fairly normal rock band with soft sensual clean guitar driven intros with darkened atmospheric backdrops but proceed to heavier alternative metal climaxes, however the dissonant noise angst that comes from the provoking alternative tunings and oddly juxtaposed angularities adds intense layers of industrial bleakness creating a post-punk sounding style of math rock sputtering around in an atmospheric post-rock sort of trajectory. This is indeed downer music but the kind that envisions a sense of profound beauty lurking under the surface below. The hard-hitting harshness is smoothed out by mystery and melancholy with ambient swirls and echoey guitars or jazzified drum outbursts in the company of raging guitar and bass noise. The production is excellent.

HOLLOWED contains two behemoth tracks “In A Deathless Spell” and “Monochrome” that exceed the eleven minute mark with the remainder rating form near three to over eight. The musical style is surely a grower but has a weird perverted seduction as the slightly off tune melodies exude a logical melodic progression without actually explicitly existing as if the music is a mere shadow of an unheard underpinning. While the textures and timbres remind me a lot of early Kayo Dot, the music itself has a more pseudo-melodic post-rock progression with Marie Billy’s vocals adding a frigid fresh blanket of frost to the already wintry abstractness. It’s hard to explain what makes this band so addictive but it’s like a bitter chai without sugar. It stimulates and slightly disgusts at the same time. Dark and dreary. Perfect for a rainy day!


Album · 2013 · Avant-garde Metal
Cover art Buy this album from MMA partners
siLLy puPPy
I’m the first to admit that i’m attracted to creepy and weird album covers and check out bands that i’ve never encountered solely on album cover art alone from time to time. Such was the case with the Liège, Belgium based HELIUM HORSE FLY, which is a name that also demands attention. While this little known band was founded in 2009 and is technically still active, they have only released two EPs, “A Dispute to Redefine Clearly Frontiers Between Devils and Angels” (2010), “Fishing For Ghosts” (2011) and their only full-length album to date, the 2013 eponymously titled released which is the album that caught my eye. Damn, if i happened to look up and see a suited figure with a hand for a head, i’d friggin freak out and crap myself!

HELIUM HORSE FLY is one of those bands that straddles a few genres and can loosely be tucked in them all but really doesn’t fit neatly into any. While the nomenclature demands these tags which generate avant-garde metal, post-metal, art rock, math rock and experimental rock / metal, this quartet is a unique mix of all of the above. The band consists of the founders Stéphane Dupont (guitar/keyboards/vocals), Dimitri Iannello (bass/clarinet) and Marie Billy as lead vocalist. Bastien Dupont (drums) would only join after the first two EPs in time for the recording of this self-titled debut full-length.

The band present a moody mix of restrained melancholic rock that engages in energetic metal outbursts but flows along in a nonchalant post-metal pace while engaging in occasional jittery math rock time signature freakouts. The main stabilizing effect is Marie Billy’s powerful vocal belting with a slightly contrapuntal phrasing over the rhythmic instrumental section. Her lyrics teeter on the bridge between singing and poetic recital not unlike Catherine Ribeiro’s unique style however this is in English and she has more of a vocal range.

Overall HELIUM HORSE FLY’s only full album comes off mostly as a hardcore post-rock album that incorporates some metal into the mix for bombastic contrast. Avant-garde but not overly so with enough progressive elements to add some zest to an otherwise slowly oozing collection of eight tracks with the two longest “Adrift” and “Breaches” extending past the ten minute mark. The music is quite hypnotic but not psychedelic in a trippy way. It’s more mesmerizing in a cold, detached post-rock manner in the vein of the greats like Godspeed You! Black Emperor that allow a building up of tension to a crescendo of some sort although there are too many other elements to really be called post-rock but it certainly has that vibe. It has a real downer vibe sort of like Maudlin of the Well or other Toby Driver projects.

While much of the album is drenched in a jangle guitar melancholy some tracks such as “Lamento Of A Dinosaur” have a much heavier guitar presence and utilizes the quirky time signature that the riffs carry out through the entire album only more pronounced. The overall interaction of the band members is quite unique. Billy’s vocals remind me of a vocal jazz lounge sort of musical act while the math rock sensibilities and post-rock timbres take me somewhere else completely. The band find an interesting way to bridge all of these elements into a mature band sound that is actually quite addictive. Add to that the production is spot on with beautiful guitar echoes and a perfect mixing of the different sounds involved. This band sounds nothing like i was expecting but i have to say that i’m pleasantly surprised.


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