New Stuff Roundup: Yeruselem & Tribe of Pazuzu
“Sometimes moms and dads get a little, well, accustomed to each other. Dads especially. So they need to explore new ways to express their love.”
And sometimes little bears get awfully tired at the wee hours of the night, and remember they were supposed to put the pen on the paper, swear, and get to work. Sometimes said little bears also find out that the techy deathgrind album they were going to write about with all it’s proceedings being donated into mental health charity were also being made by mom-beating jerks and have to start all over again. As a world-renowned colleague once put it, oh bother.
Tribe of Pazuzu boasts a mighty line-up with Cryptopsy drummer Flo Mounier joined by Incantation guitarist John McEntee and lead by former Soulstorm vocalist/bassist Nick Sagias, whom apparently served in Pestilence for a few minutes as well, rounded out by second guitarist Randy Harris. The group announced their existence and debut EP Herectal Uprising for a February 8th date, only a few weeks ago but still seem to have generated surprisingly little fanfare considering the names involved.
What they have on offer is rather straightforward, modern sounding but old school heading death metal with a very slight blackened edge here and there. Those crowd chant parts add a bit of memorability into the mix, so I’m still rather hopeful for the EPs quality. Even if this title track is just good.
Back when Yeruselem was announced, as a collaboration between Blunt Ass Nord’s Vindsval and W. D. Feld I felt excited. You see, it had been previously announced that Memoria Vetusta would not be a trilogy like everyone had expected for one reason or another, and later that the next installment would not be a BaN album, and naturally I came to expect that Yeruselem would be the project under which name it would be released. Had I actually paid attention I would likely have been less so, since Feld has been BaN’s on-again-off-again keyboardist/drummer not only for the two first editions of Memoria Vetusta, but also for such records as MoRT, Deus Salutis Meæ and Odinist.
On the other hand, the experience of those records, combined with the cited sources of inspiration on the promo letter – Godflesh, Pitchshifter, Killing Joke, Oranssi Pazuzu and especially goddern Coil, sounded very much up several of my alleys. Is it even possible to attempt anything genuinely influenced by all of the above, to rouse my interest and suspicion in a manner most ill-befitting, and still somehow not disappoint? Surely not.
“An ambitious project born of the last echoes of the surrealist album Cosmosophy (the third chapter of the famous 777 trilogy released by BaN between 2011 and 2012) and borrowing a great deal of influences in order to create a congruent melding of Industrial metal, cold new wave, electronica and post-punk.” A-ha, that sounds so much less endearing than what I had concocted up in my head. This take’s on you.
The problem is, BaN has covered such a vast arrangement of different styles and approaches it would take significant effort to deviate so much from their catering that the project would develop a distinct face of it’s own, and with the particular set of influences mentioned above it seems highly unlikely this will happen.
And to the surprise of exactly no one, Yeruselem sounds like it could have very well been a BaN album. The Sublime is perhaps bass-heavier than Deus Salutis Meæ, more intently industrial it’s mother project and includes more focused forays into the world of modern day electronica and psychedelic guitar leads, but all talk of culminating “in a new vocal and lyrical clarity which moves further towards communication than anything previously recorded by the pair” is hodgepodge. A world of sound and direction that may seem like a leap to the duo themselves, but hardly breaks any new ground.
None of this translates into bad music, though, and The Sublime should suffice for any soul yearning for the colder, harsher and more industrial side of BaN to hammer them.