Wolves in the Throne Room – Black Cascade

blackcascadeWikipedia is a great starting point for things that don’t matter too much, but consider the following:

The band has described their sound as “purifying black metal” or “transformative black metal”, although in interviews the band has shown an unwillingness to be restricted by any musical label.[citation needed]

How many bands or artists have a willingness to be restricted by musical labels? Let’s simplify – how many people enjoy being pigeonholed? How many people enjoy having hours and days and months of work summed up in a few dismissive words?

Citation needed, indeed.

Anyway, Black Casade is a bit lighter and more poppy – as far as that term might stretch here – than their previous releases, and the vocals are brought to the forefront, somewhat to the detriment of the music. The delivery retains a cartoonish air, but the rushing thum-thum-thum of the drums and anthemic guitars – the point of return for every song they’ve ever done – is still extremely capitivating.

Lyrics in general are kinda dumb; it’s easy to remember the refrains from songs because they’re not a complicated set of instructions on how to build your own oceanic desalination plant; they’re like poetry, but with less thought. Taken as a body, the only lyrics dumber than the general category of “metal” is the general category of “rap”; I can’t imagine ELF-inspired* lyrics will be any better. It’s all shrieky goodness at the end of the day, more catharsis than cerebral content.

*I’d say I’m a bit hesitant to fund earth-firster style thinking in any format, but that’d be a lie. I don’t really care what they spend their ducats on or what feelings they have about modern technology. In a very real sense it’s none of my business.

Edit: Metal reviews bring out the worst in the people who read the onion.

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9 Comments

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9 responses to “Wolves in the Throne Room – Black Cascade

  1. ancient_warrior

    Black metallers need to be tree huggers. If they aren’t there won’t be any more forests to stalk in whilst cursing towards the heavens that they should have worn a few extra layers to protect against the frost.

  2. heh.

    well, in a very strict sense, a truly american black metal ethos would have to be nationalistic and deeply protestant a la the second great awakening. perhaps fixated on abortion, which satisfies both blood and boden, sort of.

    it’d be better than so much of that heathen music crap my beloved current 93 accidentally helped birth.

  3. simplicio

    which heathen music crap is that? i wasn’t aware of tibet as a real trend setter.

  4. oh there’s a whole subgenre of militaristic pagan/nationalist/blah blah “apocalyptic folk”. i guess we can blame tibet for that, though it’s more like the people who were mad when he “came out” as a armageddonist jesus guy started bands.

  5. simplicio

    I’ve never heard any of that. Do you think Tibet spawned any more of it than those scandinavian/nordic nationalist metal dudes?

  6. it may be a mixture of the two; i do remember hearing back in the long lost late nineties via rec.music.industrial and the like of “current 93 inspired bands but minus all that jesus crap”.

    wikipedia sort of backs me up, which may only be worth the paper it’s printed on.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Neofolk

  7. for the record i find david tibet’s apocalyptic christianity one of his most interesting traits.

  8. Max

    I realize I may be commenting on an old post, but I’ve been trying to find the lyrics to this album everywhere. You give the impression that you have them. Could you please verify this? Thanks!

  9. naw, sorry. the first song has some stuff about mountainsides and the end of the world…i think.

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