REVIEW: Non Serviam – Le Coeur Bat

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In the Beany Boy house we appreciate weird, especially when it is explicitly anti-Nazi. Non Serviam is a French avant-garde extreme music collective, and damn if they don’t make some compelling strangeness.

Those of you who hold the usual metalhead fascination with endless taxonomy may be disappointed to hear me say that there’s not really any concrete way for me to nail down a specific genre of this album. There’s a lot of black metal influence, some industrial, some noise, some dance, goth, but overall it’s incredibly unique, which is why I’m keeping it all under the incredibly nebulous umbrella of avant-garde/experimental extreme music. Dance-like trances will break out into gut-wrenching and bestial heaviness, while electronic textures float over the top.

Le Coeur Bat starts out with an epic-length 25 minute title track that builds from a base layer of electronic beats and ambiance to chance-music like heavy sections. While different textures and moods ebb and flow, rhythms drifting apart from one another before coming back to beat you over the head, the overall mood of the opener is of being pulled along by an overwhelming wave that grows ever more relentless.

The following gothy track, “Infanticide,” leads the way to the off-kilter “Nights in Black Masses,” putting some sampled speech front and center as instruments wend their way in the background, growing dissonances. This leads to the relentlessly heavy “Salem.”

It’s been a long time since an extreme music track intrigued me this much. The cascading waves of heaviness, the guttural, almost vomit-like vocals, the well-incorporated electronic elements. Very nice.

By the time “S’evaporer” comes I’m wondering why this band wasn’t in my life earlier. They’re hitting almost everything that keeps me interested in a heavy band nowadays. The final track, the demo of “Je Contre” marks another favorite of mine

Le Coeur Bat comes out on September 2, and it’s well-worth adding to your library. I’m hoping these folks are able to find a label to do a physical release because this would be a rad one to hold in my hands. Highly recommended.

4/5 Flaming Toilets ov Hell

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