Void Paradigm - Ultime Pulsation / Demain Brûle review


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Band: Void Paradigm
Album: Ultime Pulsation / Demain Brûle
Release date: November 2020

01. Ultimate Pulsation
02. Demain Brûle

It wasn't enough to do a review of the post-metal project of the guy from Throane, now I gotta talk about more French projects with a black metal band of two guys from Ataraxie.

Some parallels with Ovtrenoir are obvious: both French, both formed around the same time, both have members which are in more popular bands, even though none of them are really side projects. But enough about Ovtrenoir. Void Paradigm is already on their third full length, and all three of their members are in established bands: the drummer Alexis Damien is in Pin-Up Went Down, the guitarist/bassist Julien Payan is in Ataraxie and Sordide, and vocalist Jonathan Théry is also in Ataraxie, but also in Funeralium and he even had a short stint in Bethlehem. So namedropping galore. But this all blends together nicely in Void Paradigm's sound.

Probably the most obvious example of that being the case is that, despite this being a black metal album, a lot of it really feels closer to funeral doom in spirit, especially when it comes to the tortured vocals and the glacial paces, to the point where I'm not sure whether to call it doomy black metal or blackened funeral doom. The pace obviously picks up a lot more often, and it benefits from that black metal specific guitar playing and dissonance, and the vocals often sound like something you could hear in a DSBM band that isn't awful. Over the course of the album's two 19 minute long tracks, the band is quite versatile in switching between and merging these two sounds in a way that doesn't feel that conventional, going into almost jazz-like territories.

For a blend of black metal and extreme doom metal, this is pretty chaotic. Chaotic yes, but not all over the place thankfully. It's more shape-shifting without being utterly maddening nor too concerned with showing off technical skill, despite there being clear signs of that. The guitars and bass being done by the same person do eliminate a bit of the "live" feeling this could've had, but it thankfully doesn't neglect the bass part of the equation, with there being plenty of moments for it to shine. A lot of it feels very thoroughly composed, which comes from Payan's usage of classical composition techniques which I am too out of my element to explain, but you can read on the Bandcamp page about them. What I care about is that they make Ultime Pulsation | Demain Brûle have a pretty unique sound, and it definitely is one of the best written black metal albums I've heard lately.

Void Paradigm are definitely not so avant-garde that they don't sound like anything else out there, but for the most part they sound closer to bands they're already part of. None of the performers feel underwhelming. The production is pretty superb as well. I can't find anything bad to say about it other than that I feel it lacks a certain X factor to really push it into being an album that feels colossal.

Rating breakdown
Performance: 8
Songwriting: 9
Originality: 8
Production: 9


Written on 19.11.2020 by My opinion is objective, sorry if you don't agree, but you're wrong.

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