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Nemus – Stein - Mensch

Stein - Mensch
by Aurora Kuczek at 27 May 2020, 3:44 PM

A whisper fell over the mountain with the outbreak of harmonious screams. NEMUS’s latest release entitled, “Stein - Mensch,” embarks on an arduous journey of magnificent ideas. The project is an atmospheric post-black metal project from Bamberg, Germany, and was formed in 2017. This is a one man band by Frank Riegler, which deserves great respect. The album’s intensity rises and falls with each song, but never loses its grasp. It is abstract, yet grounded in a darker ambience.

Der Berg” begins the scenery with a majestic beauty of a chorus’ voice. Bass notes glide over the mountains like a gentle breeze, and there is screaming hidden in the shadows. Black metal riffs become apparent, and the screams ascend, but they do not fit with the rest of the glistening sounds. Guitars abruptly start and stop, before a piano breaks the silence with simple chords. As the rhythm repeats, a slated mountain with jagged edges erupts from the unknown. “Der Stieg” features a violin-like instrument creating swirls in white clouds. Guitars are placed over top, but similar to the previous, its layering does not match up with the sounds. A man speaks in German, before one hears a harsh scream. The music breaks down, in a Viking sort of fashion.

Specialized synths appear over the hills of the mountains, and at another breakdown, blast beats occur. The melodies combine is colloidal solution. A flute-like pitch climbs up the mountain, catching its breath along the rocks that stick out from steepness. The gravity pulls the harmony down in “Der Fall,” where the atmospheric tendencies are continued. Synths pound in the background as simple electric guitars move softly across the path of despair. The bass slows, and a slight singing of a man speaking in German rumbles over the slated mountain with his lower notes. The instrumentation starts and stops with an aching feel of confusion. “Das Herz” begins with a strange synth, in combination with some spookiness that I cannot quench. It is as magnificent as the previous tracks, but has more echoed noises to its identity. There is a chorus of breakdowns, that sing with the double kick, and the chaos. The heart of the under story ravages through the ancient ruins that hide in trees underneath. A man waits in the darkness, ready to pounce like a rabid animal. “Der Golem” continues the chorus of the previous track, but adding more darker voices and dampened sounds. There is a high pitched riff, but it does not fit the ideas of the rest of the song. It fades with simple guitars and harsh melodies underneath. It is one of the duller songs off the album.

Das Verschließ” contains quiescent flute-like instrumentation as well as synths, and simple, yet powerful, guitars. It is an abstract piece, featuring many different behaviors. The voice returns to a Viking style as it jumps around. The melody is somber. Suddenly the music fades out. Water moves through an empty cave, and splashes against its reflecting walls, illuminating the under story with an intense light. A whisper will lead one to a cave to escape the man who awaits in the darkness. The rhythms return and the man who tries to use his scent to find those who lurk in luminescence to scare him away. This track is the most powerful one off of this album. “Der Schrei” features an extremely different situation with a middle-eastern spookiness, drumming noises, and wind-instrumental synths. The screams echo throughout the walls of the darkness, as the guitars are not as prominent. The melody is memorable, and honest. The final track, “Der Fluch,” begins with the similar atmospheric quaintness of the previous tracks. Simple guitars with low bass evolve into a prestigious melody that dies into white noise and a plucking of the bass. The melody then returns, guitars spin around in a resounding riff. Drums double kick, and guitars impede with a cacophony of varying riffs. The man puts the curse on the mountain.

NEMUS’s “Stein - Mensch,” is a wondrous creation of a fantastical dream. With vivid imagery, and differences in techniques and in sounds, the project has managed to make an imaginative realm. Although I think at times the project did sound a bit ordinary, the use of instrumentation in this concept was done fairly well.

Songwriting: 9
Musicianship: 8
Memorability: 7
Production: 9

4 Star Rating

1. Der Berg
2. Der Stieg
3. Der Fall
4. Das Herz
5. Der Golem
6. Das Verschließ
7. Der Schrei
8. Der Fluch
Frank Riegler – All instrumentation
Record Label: Naturmacht Productions


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Edited 03 December 2022

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