It seems pointless to begin writing this or continuing past drawing attention to the debut Atlantean Runes full-length and their facebook, which says all that needs to be said, for fans of Tangerine Dream and Darkthrone. Unsurprisingly for someone who gushes twice a week at lengths of a thousand words or more, I couldn’t be more succinct. Electric post-post-post black metal served in quarter-hour wedges as thick and spiritually calorific, carbohydrates for the soul. The first delving into this record was a plunge into ice-capped water, spinning, drowning, drifting further and further down towards the warmth of the molten core and the beginnings of understanding. Exactly the opposite of Workin’ Man Noise Unit, this album never seems to rise above an empty whisper in volume terms but its underlying beat… basketball bouncing… bass drum blastbeat… a ticking-over engine… the flicker of a Taser… a strobe… a manifestation hovered over by spirits of all sizes, some angelic who express themselves through choral harmonies communicating beauty and love. The others, the devils, express themselves in echoed strangled calls that ricochet across the album as the drums blast on indifferently. Those whole prose is strung out into forty-odd minutes of intense electric fumbling without any beginning or end point. It’s cinematic in a blissful way.
Just like Julian Cope’s too-little-heard Woden from earlier this year, Atlantean Runes take us to the pits of hell so that we may gesture towards heaven, while keeping our feet on the earth. There are moments when the ethereal beauty seems to weigh heavily on the chest with a mountainous mass. I need to be quite direct; this blog has become a constant search for the cure for what ails us and at least momentarily, Atlantean Runes Tape may have the answer. Vast labyrinthine and barren soundscapes are woven in the sinewave fabric of the record. Drifting peacefully in and out; propelled and surging like a tall and strapping strident man nighttime striding the barrows with vast steps across the dew-frozen grass as the moon illuminates the hallowed ground in strange leering shadows. Except not the moon. The supernova star of Betelgeuse, so far away and yet brighter than the full moon, a nighttime daytime outside of all reason and comprehension. Coming out of La Otracina and with an unclear involvement in the Eidetic Seeing album everyone except me liked, I expected much more Electric Moon off this album, not the completely thrilling and elegantly compelling post-everything refusenik electric black metal we’re presented with. Like the slab side of a chrome-and-glass building there’s nothing to hold on to. The music is so palatial and splendid in its many carefully crafted facets that to describe further is dancing about architecture and feels almost churlishly spoiling the huge leap of faith and splash of depth you’ll sink into with this album. Up there with albums of the year (which I am assembling, suggestions on a postcard always accepted, a few more things yet to come in that might make the grade) and so utterly different and post-everything that it makes me glad to be a fan of music. These are the moments I live for, when an album opens up, and at the bottom of Pandora’s Box, lay hope. And with a righteous and totally impenetrable caustic agenda a buncha punks set to work in whatever way seems best on all the things you should understand and comprehend. This is a joy and a singular pleasure. Of course depressingly my standards have been lowering to the point where any music that comes across my desk that doesn’t immediately make me want to kill myself and wonder if we aren’t all zombies staggering with shattered jawbones down the main thoroughfares wondering aimlessly without knowing exactly who and where we are? If this isn’t the sort of music that is being piped into my life like FBI psychological warfare being waged against the Davidian compound of the last sane man on earth… Atlantean Runes might not be ‘punk’ as the profit-led media has seen fit to term that narrow genre, but it’s one of the many records that will sound the bell of call to arms for the rock and roll revolution, and as I’m dragged from a press junket with whatever filthy scum the media sees fit to prop up as quality by police with blood in my teeth and feverishly stammering to fat-hand paparazzi cunts you wouldn’t want to shake hands with “we did it, we won”. Until then, the ennui of Atlantean Runes will keep me cemented to my chair, gazing into the ceiling, dreaming of that day.
Get it all from their bandcamp, right now! The apocalypse be coming!
Written under duress by Steven.