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Thurisaz - Re-Incentive Award winner

by Dave "That Metal Guy" Campbell at 21 July 2020, 6:42 AM

THURISAZ is a Belgian, Atmospheric/Avant-Garde Black Metal band, formed in 1997. After several demos, the band released its first full-album “Scent of a Dream” in 2004. The album sums up the best THURISAZ has to offer: very variated, high standard Avantgarde Doom Metal with lots of emotion and depth. Their growing live reputation gained access across the borders, which finally resulted in a European tour. In the winter of 2006, they crashed the studio again to record their second album "Circadian Rhythm," which was released in April 2007. The band promoted the album as much as they can, with as highlights a US-and EU-tour and spots on prestigious festivals and stages. In 2011, they released their third full-length "The Cimmerian Years". The album was once again recorded in the CCR-studio in Belgium. In 2015 they released "The Pulse Of Mourning." “Re-Incentive” is the band’s fifth full length album, and contains seven tracks.

“In-Balance” leads off the album. It’s also the longest on the album, at over ten minutes in length. Eerie sounds fill the background…the sign of something large coming. When the main riff drops, it’s hard to tell what the genre is, because this isn’t standard Black Metal…that’s for sure. But, the long scream changes everything, then come the harsh vocals. The symphonic elements are wonderful here. They really allow the sound to expand. The clean vocals are unexpected, but again are a nice addition to the sound. “The Veil” is a bit shorter, and with opening sad tones. When the vocals come, you are reminded of the genre, but the guitars don’t really build that “wall of sound” that often accompanies the genre.

“Monologue” opens with clean vocals and a tempered, melancholy sound. I really like the way this song is put together. The vocals create this longing and it is high with poignant tones. I have always said there can be beauty in sadness. The crescendo at the end really tips the scales. "Illuminight” is over eight-minutes in length. At first, clean and harsh vocals combine with some light symphonic elements in the background, and this overall sense of doom or that the world is ending. Just after the two-minute mark, this passage of pure melodic bliss rears its head, and it slows to acoustic guitars around the half-way mark. The sheer amount of variety that the band has in its repertoire is amazing. Just when you think you have caught the melody line, it changes. “Exemption” begins with hushed, melancholy tones and that feeling returns that something is out there in the dark, waiting for its chance to strike. It takes a while, but what comes is a big, crashing sound with keys and guitars that nearly light the world on fire. Talk about how to expand a sound…this is expert level technique.

“Isle of No Man” opens with hushed piano notes and a charming, melodic sound. There is a surprise around every corner on this album. There is a delicate beauty here that is subdued to the point that you just have to shut off the world around you and let it absorb into you. When the riff crashes in, it’s like the world’s largest wave just appeared out of nowhere and begins its decent into the ocean, leveling all. “Eternity Expires” is the closing song. Following some easy listening vocals, the song begins to swell, and finishes on the brute strength of the guitars, bass, drums and keys, with a long fade-out.

For being around since 1997, I am impressed with the band’s ability to keep their music fresh. One could imagine them hanging on to a certain sound of their early years, but instead they move to expand their sound with different techniques and elements, bringing in Doom, symphony, and melody to the table to really allow the album to stand out. Some of the songs are heavy and aggressive, while others are more gentle and ambient. I love the diversity here, and haven’t heard this pretty of a Black Metal album yet this year. This album really has it all, and you will become lost in the world of THURISAZ’s ”Re-Incentive.”

Songwriting: 10
Musicianship: 9
Memorability: 10
Production: 9

5 Star Rating

1. In-Balance
2. The Veil
3. Monologue
4. Illuminight
5. Exemption
6. Isle of No Man
7. Eternity Expires
Peter Theuwen – Grunts, Clean voice, Guitars
Mattias Theuwen – Screams, Guitars
Pepijn De Raeymaecker – Drums
Kobe Canniere – Keys, Clean Voice
Hannes Leroy – Bass
Record Label: Independent


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