Wednesday 21 March 2018

Review: Bornless Fire – 'Arcanum'


Marking his return to electro-industrial, Dawn Of Ashes mastermind Kristof Bathory unleashes Bornless Fire with a hellish debut, 'Arcanum'. With his main project having moved into more pronounced black metal territory in recent years, long-time fans have been yearning for a return to the electronic nightmares of his early sound. And now it seems those prayers have been answered.

Yet Bathory isn't simply retreading old ground. Bornless Fire is its own beast and 'Arcanum' makes that very clear. With a broader sonic palette, cinematic elements and better production values, 'Arcanum' may be a nod to DOA's origins, but it is far more accomplished than those early records.

Despite the slightly long instrumental opener 'Genesis' that kind of provides a false start, songs such as 'Emerging From The Void', 'Feel The Rage', 'RUNA', 'Sex Magick', 'Leech', 'The Miserable Image Of Abrahamic Slavery', and 'Becoming The Divine' are a strong and dynamic manifesto of crunching industrial beats, scathing synth leads, dark ambient pads, cinematic atmospheres and unsettling melodies underpinned by Bathory's demonic vocals.

The songwriting and lyrics show a far more mature and refined mindset that comes through as pretty progressive. There are dance-friendly tracks but this isn't your standard aggrotech club-fodder. Instead the songs evolve and meander through atmospheric refrains and draw the listener in deeper. But just to keep that traditional club appeal the remix contributions from Tactical Sekt and Suicide Commando more than adequately cover those bases.

In terms of production this is a strong and ambitious effort. Cinematic drums sit alongside distorted industrial elements and dark ambient atmospheres permeate the heaviest passages. The end result is a fine balance of atmosphere and aggression.

If this is a one-shot deal to pacify older DOA fans and satisfy an urge that doesn't fit with his main project's current direction, then what a shot it is. 'Arcanum' is a very strong album that intelligently mixes its subject matter with engaging and progressively tinged heavy electronic music. It resists typical stylistic directions that colour much of the modern scene and crafts it's own unique presence. It would be great to hear more from Bornless Fire in the future, and it will be interesting to see how, if it does continue, Bathory balances the two project. But for now this is a damn strong first step.

Download post as PDF file
Twitter Delicious Facebook Digg Stumbleupon Favorites More

Enter your email address:

Delivered by FeedBurner

[Valid Atom 1.0]

Click to download our free compilation albums!


Radio Nightbreed