Review Summary: The debut from Burzum delivers.
Ever wondered what it is like to look into the mind of a lunatic? To stare right into the empty voids that are eyes and see what is going on inside their twisted minds? Although this is quite impossible to literally accomplish, some insight to what storm is raging inside their imaginations can be experienced through examination of artwork done by the person, in this case the omnipotent Count Grishnackh (born Kristian Vikernes on February 11, 1973), of Mayhem fame. His true artistic talent shines through in his solo project, Burzum. The self titled debut from Burzum provides a window of opportunity to study the tumalt that spins on inside of Varg Vikernes’s head.
From the opening droned stynthesizers of Feeble Screams From Forests Unknown
to the closing silence of Dungeons Of Darkness
, a listening unlike any other befalls the listener. Ambient interludes and fading melodies strung together in perfect form engage a feeling of inner peace, yet uneasyness is not far from the mix. Black Spell Of Destruction
drones on with fractured guitar riffs and driving drum beats. One thing that is almost absent from Burzum
is blastbeats. The usual pelting of skins that is thrown your way in Black Metal, is mysteriously missing from this record. The replacement: interesting and effective beats that keep the music held together. Ea, Lord Of The Depths
is a perfect example of a simple 4/4 beat with double timed bass hits that holds a song together like Gorilla Glue.
The moving ambience on this record is enticing. Songs entirly composed of haunting keys add a dark mood to the music. Channeling The Power Of Souls Into A New God
is an interlude that sets the mood for the entire album. Channeling synthes and daunting melodies darken an already aphotic listen. The Crying Orc
, another instrumental track invites fantastic melodies into the mix. The short, yet beautiful guitar scales keep the dark mood of the album to a maximum, while still wooing with their creative brilliance. My Journey To The Stars
is no different, with unheard of catchy riffs and pained shrieks that are put forth through 8 minutes of atmosphere and elegance.
, a blatant Bathory rip off, shows that an almost positive attitude can also be contributed to the music, without adding a cheesy or aggravating sound to a somber record. Once again, twisted howls portray a tortured edge to the music. These one of a kind vocals are some of my favorites in the Black Metal genre. The relatively thin tone to all the instruments actually does not hurt the sound of the album. It fits the music amazingly and in no way could be improved upon. In under producing the record, the raw sound does not sound forced. There was no need to record this album through a tape recorder to make up for a lack of raw sound. That raw sound was integrated into the music from square one. Evil just seems to come infused with Burzum
From start to finish, the extraordinary mind of Varg Vikernes was at work. The marvelous debut from a band that would shape the face of Black Metal for years to come continues to amaze casual fans to die hards, listen after listen. The originality was crafted with perfection, and Buzum will never be duplicated.
Musicianship is superb
Melodies are beautiful
Simple yet effective instruments don’t sound forced or overdone
Dungeons Of Darkness
while contributes to atmosphere, doesn’t do much else
Some song lengths might be hard for some listeners to cope with
My Journey To The Stars
Ea, Lord Of The Depths
Feeble Screams From Forests Unknown