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Decline Of The I - Escape

Decline Of The I
by Dave "That Metal Guy" Campbell at 31 May 2018, 6:32 AM

DECLINE OF THE I is a Dark Post-Black Metal band, formed in France. “Escape” is the band’s third full-length album, from Agonia Records, the final piece in a three-album concept trilogy inspired by the works of French surgeon and philosopher Henri Laborit, whose works included studies of the brain. Multi-Instrumentalist A is joined on the album by musicians from bands MERRIMACK, ANUS MUNDI, TEMPLE OF BAAL, EIBON, and DROWNING FAME. The album contains six tracks.

“Disruption” leads off the album. The opening riff is heavy and ominous. An exchange between doctor and patient can be heard…the patient is talking about hallucinations. The riff changes, and Black Metal vocals then enter. Stylistically it reminds me a bit of the musician IHSAHN, in his heavier work, as there are some noteworthy Progressive elements at play here as well. One thing that the song is able to do is really impart a harrowing feeling, even in the more hushed passages. “Enslaved by Existence” opens with some brief spoken words, and then the main riff slams in hard, with echoed chants in the background and filthy vocals…a church service turned into ritual sacrifice. The ethereal passages are on point. Wicked and villainous, they could frighten even the most seasoned Black Metal fan.

“Organless Body” has a slow groove from a sterile guitar riff and raging vocals. It has a hypnotic trance, threatening to turn you into something unnatural, if you don’t keep your wits about you. It picks up speed for a bit, and then retreats into the shadow, with a two-note guitar section and cursed background sounds. “Hurlements en Faveur de FKM” is a little shorter in length, opening with some noise that leads quickly to an aggressive wall of Black Metal. As the bass guitar thuds in the background, words are spoken in French demonstratively. Though I cannot understand them, they are delivered in a way that ties in with the concept…perhaps an experiment gone wrong. Towards the end, it picks up speed and becomes full in your face again. You can feel it rumble in your bones.

From Wikipedia, “negentropy is reverse entropy. It means things becoming more in order. By 'order' is meant organization, structure and function: the opposite of randomness or chaos. One example of negentropy is a star system such as the Solar System. Another example is life." The song “Negentropy” is a ten-minute opus. It starts chaotically but settles into a linear pattern, initially led by forbidding piano notes and some drum electronica. The main riff is weighted and savage, and as it moves forward it builds with steam, igniting like a dry pile of tinder. “Je Pense Donc je Fuis” is the thirteen-minute closing song. At first it appears fairly innocuous, but you can hear something nefarious bubbling under the surface. It comes out around the three-minute mark. In the form of a chunky riff that is bleak and desolate, reminding me of country-mates GOJIRA a bit. From there, there are alternating aggressive passages with some more solemn and withdrawn ones, and a final four minutes of lamenting female vocals. That fearsome sound is always present.

When you talk about Dark Black Metal, the term doesn’t really do the album justice. When I listen to it, it reminds me of the movie “Hostel,” where people were lured to an underground operation and tortured and killed by others who paid a lot of money for the twisted pleasure. It’s dark, cold and there is no escape. Your fate is sealed, an all you can do is anticipate the impending horror that awaits you.

Songwriting: 9
Originality: 8
Memorability: 8
Production: 8

4 Star Rating

1. Disruption
2. Enslaved by Existence
3. Organless Body
4. Hurlements en Faveur de FKM
5. Negentropy (Fertility Sovereign)
6. Je Pense Donc je Fuis
A – Everything
Record Label: Agonia Records


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