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   MÖRK GRYNING
Pieces Of Primal Expressionism
2003
No Fashion Records
http://www.mork-gryning.com


rating: 4/5

1. The Sleeping Star
2. The Cradle Of Civilization
3. Perpetual Dissolution
4. Our Urn
5. An Old Man's Lament
6. The Worm
7. Fragments And Pieces
8. On The Verge Of Prime Divinity
"Pieces Of Primal Expressionism" is far from being your conventional black metal album which is already reflected in the unconventional artwork. In fact, I'm not even sure if this album still falls under the black metal umbrella. This is Mörk Gryning's fourth album and I'm only little familiar with their carreer but I'm aware the band - like so many others - changed their sound quite a bit over the years (I dare to say a bit reminiscent of Satyricon).

The black metal roots are still clearly there but there's so much more to this sound. Maybe it's lame and I know it became quite popular to use it but the impression "avantgarde" popped up in my head and that's why I mention it. Keyboards and samples are not the only tools to achieve that kind of feel of course. Various other instruments add a lot to the diversity of the songs, such as a violin (in "The Cradle Of Civilazation" and "An Old Man's Lament") and a trombone (in "An Old Man's Lament"). Now that I already mentioned "An Old Man's Lament" twice: that's probably the most extreme song in terms of tempo changes. Laid back acoustic parts and brutal black metal outbreaks go hand in hand here - I like it ;) A hell of a catchy song is "Perpetual Dissolution", which is even a bit extravagant for this album but the chorus is so damn hymnic! So, the dynamics, the mix of fast, heavy and brutal parts on one hand and calmer or even slow passages on the other hand, are the essence of this album. The vocals are not as diverse as the music is though there are a few clean vocals ("The Worm") thrown in. I also find the parts for two voices on "Our Urn" (which has a bass intro before the band joins in) pretty great. What is really striking with this kind of music is that the guitar work often is extremely melodic and seems to derive from traditional metal.

Closing this attempt of a review I should mention the stellar production courtesy of Daniel Bergstrand and Örjan Örnkloo at Dug Out Studio. Black metal purists won't like this album, but other people interested in extreme music should find this interesting.

submitted by Cora 09.08.2003

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