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Blut Aus Nord - What Once Was... Liber II [EP]
5 July 2012


01. I
02. II


In recent months the focus of Blut Aus Nord's fanbase and outpouring of news has clearly been on the impending final part of the 777 trilogy, Cosmosophy. Even had that not been the case the most ardent fan could have quite easily let this slip by without notice; there was nary a sight nor sound from the label concerning this vinyl-only EP, perhaps at best one Facebook update shortly before its release. Maybe that was Debemur Mortii's plan from the outset; to keep an air of mystery surrounding it. After all, this kind of thing isn't made for more than a smattering of weirdos and audiophiles.

If there's something that has never sat quite right with me concerning the lauded 777 series (thus far) it would have to be shift in tone and sound from previous works to a more in-your-face, sterile design, resulting in a somewhat artificial flavour. No question on its ability to contort songwriting concepts beyond anyone's ken, but the delivery somewhat hampered the overall effect and impact. With that in mind it's truly difficult to overstate the perfect balance and poise of Liber II. Whilst similar to Liber I's violent and primitive nature, this not only expands on it songwriting wise, introducing atmospheric and contemplative moments, most notably the memorable exits of both sides of the vinyl to an exceptional degree (particularly as it manages to do so within the 29 minute span of the record) but the encapsulating production and tone are second to none in the band's discog. This is dissonant music in 3D. Not your gimmicky 3D you'll see at any bloated summer blockbuster, but 3 dimensions of organic depth, destruction and atmosphere. Every note, every sound is audible and available for experience.

For many, Cosmosophy was seemingly odds on to win this year's album of the year with no apparent opposition, but like last year they're once again competing with themselves for the top spot, and no one would begrudge you for placing your bets on this.

Fuck the Olympics. The real game is here: getting through this with your sanity intact.


Band profile: Blut Aus Nord
Album: What Once Was... Liber II


 


written by !J.O.O.E.! | 01.08.2012



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Mr. Doctor - 01.08.2012 at 19:26  
I still have no problems with Sect(s) (you didn't mention it here but you have in many other places)... I just love the artificial sound and tone on the 777 albums because that's how it's supposed to sound anyway... Artificial.

But back to this album and review. Great review and words as usual! and damn, the EP is fantastic I always love bands that comete with themselves, that's the key.
!J.O.O.E.! - 01.08.2012 at 19:31  
Written by Mr. Doctor on 01.08.2012 at 19:26

I still have no problems with Sect(s) (you didn't mention it here but you have in many other places)... I just love the artificial sound and tone on the 777 albums because that's how it's supposed to sound anyway... Artificial.

But back to this album and review. Great review and words as usual! and damn, the EP is fantastic I always love bands that comete with themselves, that's the key.

Cheers! Actually this was a staff pick but I deleted it when I realised it was over halfway to the minimum review length.

Yeah, I can't really put my finger on what it is with the "sound" as such, but to me this just sounds so much deeper and grimier..



This EP goes someway in recapturing that tone somewhat (despite the different style). The 777's have too much of a kind EBM/Electro-industrial/Fear Factory etc. kind of "industrial" whereas this and TEoAM has a more unique sound that doesn't sound like anything else. Kind of like girders falling in an apocalyptic city. More analogue, less digital.
Mr. Doctor - 01.08.2012 at 19:38  
Written by !J.O.O.E.! on 01.08.2012 at 19:31
The 777's have too much of a kind EBM/Electro-industrial/Fear Factory etc. kind of "industrial"


Woah dude that's offensive but still.. It might sound like that because (and this is a wild guess!): They are pretty much Industrial/black, right?!

I know this is speculation but I'm still pretty sure it wouldn't sound as good if the tone of the guitars was "grimmer". It wouldn't work for the songwriting.
!J.O.O.E.! - 01.08.2012 at 19:41  
Written by Mr. Doctor on 01.08.2012 at 19:38


Woah dude that's offensive but still.. It might sound like that because (and this is a wild guess!): They are pretty much Industrial/black, right?!

I know this is speculation but I'm still pretty sure it wouldn't sound as good if the tone of the guitars was "grimmer". It wouldn't work for the songwriting.

Well it worked pretty well for The Work Which Transforms God =P

I just wish the sound could be a bit deeper on the 777's.
Mr. Doctor - 01.08.2012 at 19:42  
Written by !J.O.O.E.! on 01.08.2012 at 19:41
Well it worked pretty well for The Work Which Transforms God =P


Not applicable if you ask me. While there are some similarities, the songwriting and "style" is still pretty different.
!J.O.O.E.! - 01.08.2012 at 19:44  
Written by Mr. Doctor on 01.08.2012 at 19:42


Not applicable if you ask me. While there are some similarities, the songwriting is still pretty different.

It's not a huge complaint at the end of the day, I just think they could benefit with a slightly less shiny production.
Slayer666 - 02.08.2012 at 00:51  
OK, they don't even need to release Cosmosophy this year, this EP is more than enough of a BaN fix to last me throughout the year.
malaikat - 02.08.2012 at 01:57  
I just wanted to say how much I love "Blut aus Nord". If black metal has but one purpose, it is to let BuT operate withing its context. /mushy
!J.O.O.E.! - 02.08.2012 at 02:06  
Written by malaikat on 02.08.2012 at 01:57

I just wanted to say how much I love "Blut aus Nord". If black metal has but one purpose, it is to let BuT operate withing its context. /mushy

This (even despite its cheesiness)
malaikat - 02.08.2012 at 02:11  
Damn, BaN. Not BuT. WTF, brain. Now I'm embarassed. Cheesiness definitely destroys brain cells
!J.O.O.E.! - 02.08.2012 at 02:12  
Written by malaikat on 02.08.2012 at 02:11

Damn, BaN. Not BuT. WTF, brain. Now I'm embarassed. Cheesiness definitely destroys brain cells

I thought you were making some kind of visual pun there or something o.O
LeChron James - 02.08.2012 at 02:27  
Would it be at all possible for the entire trilogy to win album of the year? Since they're all called "Epitome" I, II, etc? Or does it have to be one album with all of its tracks released on one disc?
malaikat - 02.08.2012 at 02:27  
Written by !J.O.O.E.! on 02.08.2012 at 02:12

I thought you were making some kind of visual pun there or something o.O


Why... Yes, yes I was. How, err, observant of you. *cough*
!J.O.O.E.! - 02.08.2012 at 02:33  
Written by LeChron James on 02.08.2012 at 02:27

Would it be at all possible for the entire trilogy to win album of the year? Since they're all called "Epitome" I, II, etc? Or does it have to be one album with all of its tracks released on one disc?

Well technically Deathspell's SMRC, FAS and Paracletus are a trilogy but I doubt anyone could justify them being considered for one year's awards

It is a shame BaN didn't get them out all in a year though, probably would have topped a lot of charts for pure achievement alone.
LeChron James - 02.08.2012 at 02:41  
Written by !J.O.O.E.! on 02.08.2012 at 02:33

Well technically Deathspell's SMRC, FAS and Paracletus are a trilogy but I doubt anyone could justify them being considered for one year's awards

It is a shame BaN didn't get them out all in a year though, probably would have topped a lot of charts for pure achievement alone.

Yeah, if they did get all 3 of those albums out in a year, that'd be an amazing achievement. I still think it's amazing solely on the grounds of them releasing a pair of killer albums with a very short amount of time in between. By comparison it took Deathspell 6 years to release their trilogy hahaha.
Ag Fox - 02.08.2012 at 15:14  
Wow, so excited to hear this EP now lol
Oaken - 08.08.2012 at 00:12  
Not an easy listen.
BoxCar Willy - 08.08.2012 at 01:17  
Written by Oaken on 08.08.2012 at 00:12

Not an easy listen.

Really? I loved this, and I'm not even a big fan of BaN.
Oaken - 08.08.2012 at 01:48  
Written by BoxCar Willy on 08.08.2012 at 01:17

Written by Oaken on 08.08.2012 at 00:12

Not an easy listen.

Really? I loved this, and I'm not even a big fan of BaN.

I love it too, but there's a lot of stuff going on simultaneously. Also the production caught me off guard. I thought it was going to be like the 777 albums.
Oaken - 08.08.2012 at 17:19  
Written by BoxCar Willy on 08.08.2012 at 01:17

Written by Oaken on 08.08.2012 at 00:12

Not an easy listen.

Really? I loved this, and I'm not even a big fan of BaN.

After about 5 listens, I don't think it was that difficult to get into. The production was a slap in the face, but I got accustomed to it. Now about the music; The riffs are amazing and fast as they bludgeon their way across the album. I liked the grimier vibe and the darker textures. This is as monolithic as the 777 albums.
-DC-002- - 11.08.2012 at 00:02  
Really great release I think. Blut aus nord always has great build ups and some of the best high points (zeniths)? in their music, the last half of the second song is like that for me. The two tracks could have been 4 with those ambient breaks around the middle of both songs.... or maybe 6! with the ambience separated into their own separate tracks cuz what's a Blut Aus Nord LP/EP without ambient tension.

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