Premiere: C.L.I (Cruel Life Inside) – Ignis
A Post Posting Premiere: Post-Black served Calabrese
In the Southern tip of The Boot, as we in Finland (and literally everyone else, everywhere) call Italy, lies the region of Calabria. It is a mountainous region surrounded by the Tyrrhenian and Ionian seas, known for its olives, lemons, cheese and wine. And the ‘Ndrangheta. Or so I have very recently been told by a Wikipedia article, as I must admit, I knew next to nothing about Calabria before beginning to type these words.
A few years ago, in 2017, to be precise, C.L.I, short for Cruel Life Inside, came into existence there. If you have never heard of the band before, you will be forgiven, for there has been nothing to hear until now that they’ve finished their debut full-length Eclipsis Vitae. Except for the penultimate track “Loricum”, which was, technically, released as a single way back in 2019. Which is to say that the road to Eclipsis Vitae has been long and arduous, but the care and work that’s gone into it is clearly audible and makes the trouble worth the while.
Today, we at the World Toilet Headquarters, LLC, Austin, TX 78753 c/o Hell, have the honor of premiering “Ignis”, the next single, and the first to appear during this album cycle, from said debut. “But Karhu, you dashingly handsome and devilishly cunning Bear, you haven’t told us what it sounds like”, you say and “besides, we don’t like the name” continue. Well to tell you the truth I’m not big on the name either, sorry. I’m sure it bears a significant meaning to the three men who collectively form the entity described by the moniker, but if I had merely come across it somewhere, I would likely have skipped the chance to familiarize myself with them. Or maybe not, I am a curious little thing after all. In either case*, I would have come to regret the decision to skip them, and now I wish to save you from that same regret. That I don’t have. Because I didn’t skip this.
C.L.I describe themselves as an atmospheric/post-black metal band—and while in album length that may hold true, even if I do find that it’s the melodic, atmospheric black metal sound, less caught up in endless repetition than what seems to be understood, for whatever reason, by many from the term, that really defines them and the post-influence comes as a nice touch—”Ignis” represents the less post -side of the album. It’s a classic, three-act play that mirrors the album’s development over its central journey through dark, tumultuous times and pain to rage, only to find suffering, but having suffered long enough, hope as well.
Only the aggressive first act includes vocals, and as such you are deprived of the calm, clean vocals that are otherwise made ample use of on the album. There is a second theme running the course of the record—a tribute to the mountainous plateau of Sila, and the nature of their group’s home. From this nature stems the majesty of the massive third act, in which the tremolo chords have become single-note picked guitar leads, the rage has subsides for a serene grandeur as hope is found within the act of suffering itself. But you don’t have to take my word for it, you can hear for yourself that I speak not idly.