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Telümehtår - The Well

Telümehtår
The Well
by Chris Hawkins at 27 February 2019, 5:10 AM

TELÜMEHTÅR is a Black Metal band from Rouen, in the area of Normandy, France.  Since forming/beginning this project in 2007, lone member, Lord Telümehtår has only released on other recording, 2009’s full-length, “Blåck”.  For being a solo project, there is a surprising feeling of a “band” playing during the recording, an effective notch in the composer’s belt.  The form of Black Metal employed here is similar to more modern artists, obviously heavily influenced by the wealth of creativity that has emerged from France.

The album immediately gets down to business with “Birth by Kaos”.  There is no long piano introduction or acoustic guitar, but rather blasting mayhem.  The musical chaos is oppressive in its voluminous approach via multiple layering of guitar tracks and distortion-bathed vocals.  This is actually one of the more primitive moments of the album.  As we travel further, though, the possibilities increasingly open up.  The second track, “The Maze of Existence,” feels mostly like a continuation of the first track.  This is decidedly due to the similar tempo and voicing of the instruments.  With the amount of repetition employed in the riffs, one can easily become lost in the music.  It is as if one is being pushed into a violently swirling storm, constantly and futilely reaching for something to grab hold of.  When the transition does occur, though, towards the latter half of the song, it is as if the storm clouds spontaneously reverse their direction sending the listener forcefully down the opposite path.  Before long, the initial mantra-like riff is revisited and retained for the remainder of the song.

The fourth track, “The Sailing of Life,” is the first point at which the gears seem to shift.  While the tempo remains practically the same as the previous tracks, the main riff is quite different.  It is a most arduous task to attempt to describe how the main riff grabs hold of the listener by raw emotions.  It is at once despondent, malignant, and disturbing yet there is an underlying feeling of the arcane as if an abundantly powerful supernatural force aided in the composition process.  When the instruments all drop out except for one guitar track that sounds like a Strat’s single coil pickups, the basis of the song is revealed.  When the other instruments return, it is clear that the heavy sound is achieved through layering rather than overindulgent amounts of distortion.  Perhaps it is in this way that the band has a particularly Post Black Metal/Post Metal vibe.  One could easily imagine Aaron Turner from ISIS creating Black Metal in a vein such as this moment were he to want to travel that road.  I suppose his work in TWILIGHT alongside other legends such as Wrest and Imperial could be a point of reference.

Death,” track seven, is not only the longest track, but also the most out-of-the-box.  It begins with an almost Indie Rock-sounding riff.  Were I to have heard this track at 2 AM on Sunday morning on MTV’s 120 Minutes back in the day, it would not have seemed all that out of place.  Clearly, the mastermind behind the album listens and is influenced by a wide variety of bands.  The first breakdown in the song is without doubt, the best, most stunning moment on the album.  It haunts the listener in a BURZUM sort of way – cerebrally and even spiritually.  Strangely, though, toward the latter half of the song, everything drops out and there is complete silence for several minutes before track eight begins.  I’m unsure whether this was due to an issue with my file or some artistic statement, though I’d much rather it be the former than the latter.

This album is another example of how I’ve always associated Black Metal and Punk together.  No, this is not Punk, but it has that raw, organic rebellion.  The statement is more important than the delivery.  It is interesting to see how Black Metal now permeates such a plethora of nooks and crannies of modern music.  Its influence is unmistakable and certainly so on this album.  While there is indeed experimentation at play here, it definitely is not enough to turn off potential meat and potatoes Black Metal fans.

 Songwriting:  7
Originality:  7
Memorability:  6
Production:  5


 

3 Star Rating

Tracklist:
1. Birth by Kaos
2. The Maze of Existence
3. The Grey Wolf
4. The Sailing of Life
5. Perpetual Hopes in Eternal Despair
6. The Well
7. Fortress
8. Death
9. The Weighing of Souls
 
Lineup:
Lord Telümehtår – All Instruments/Vocals
Record Label: Independent
     


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Edited 22 October 2019
 

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