Well, if you don’t know who Burzum or Varg Vikernes is by now, you must have been living in a cave with your eyes closed, hands over your ears, with no access to the internet whatsoever nor received any visitors with even the slightest notion that black metal ever existed. Still, no matter. In fact, your secluded sojourn may well have provided you the most apt milieu for the latest from burn-‘em Burzum, because after his 2011 Book at Bedtime entitled ‘Umskiptar’, Mr V has returned with his very own new age, Yoga soundtrack, ‘Sôl Austan, Mâni Vestan’.
Eschewing guitar and all things nasty in favour of soft and superannuated synth sounds, this will no doubt be viewed by most as some sort of return to the albums produced in prison where Mr V’s creativity was hindered by the diminished capacities of the instruments at hand. You can believe that if you want but regardless of the crappy tools he had at hand, they weren’t great albums. Far from it. His post-prison albums haven’t fared much better. Both ‘Belus’ and ‘Fallen’ were largely unimpressive, and ‘Umskiptar’ was a talking book with some music thrown in for good measure. And ‘Sôl Austan, Mâni Vestan’ is, for lack of a better word, dull. Musically, the album has all the spirit of an Argos catalogue, the dreary melodies delivered with all the non-enthusiasm of one of the store’s many minions. And like the working day of said minions, this just goes on and on. To call it mediocre would be an insult to mediocrity.
Call it an “anti-black metal” album if you want, but this is the kind of record that you’d find in a bargain bin or a pound shop amongst the kind of shit that sits there, rightfully ignored for decades for the simple reason that it was and always will be a waste of time. Go back to your cave. You’re much better off.
SOL AUSTAN, MANI VESTAN
Review by Jason Guest
27th May 2013
1) Sôl austan
2) Rûnar munt þû finna
7) Ganga at sôlu
10) Mâni vestan
COUNTRY OF ORIGIN:
"Musically, the album has all the spirit of an Argos catalogue, the dreary melodies delivered with all the non-enthusiasm of one of the store’s many minions."