I admit it: when the topic is Black Metal and its various manifestations one of the last countries which springs to my mind is france. The only bands I knew from there were NEHEMA, MÜTIILATION and SETH, and the last I have heard from any of these bands was years ago. So now I am listening to AMESOEURS, a name I have heard mentioned several times before but somehow ignored due to explorations into other genres than BM.
One of the genres I have started to take an interest into for example was post rock, so what AMESOEURS deliver with their debut album (and sadly, their last one at the same time – the band has disbanded just before the release of this album) is something hitting exactly the right nerve. Basically, the album is post rock combined with Black Metal; and both elements are executed just as I like it. The post rock parts are melancholic, melodic yet sometimes upbeat, while the Black Metal passages are fast as hell underlined with shredding guitars (which are more on the depressive and dreamy rather than on the raw side, like ENSLAVED for example).
The unusual is that main songwriter Neige (also from ALCEST) seldom uses his rasping Black Metal vocals, even in the menacing parts – main vocalist is piano player Audrey S. Her vocals are clear throughout the whole album (except for some fitting wailing and screaming in “Heurt” which is, to me, also the best example of what AMESOERS is about if you don’t know them) and thus one has to draw parallels to JOYLESS – and from there to the almighty FORGOTTEN WOODS, whose influence is omnipresent. The female vocals fit surprisingly well, and while the Black Metal and post rock parts sound a little bit forced onto each other sometimes, the vocals do a very good job to provide a link between them and thus making the album sound whole.
“Amesoeurs” was really a big surprise for me, and the more sad it is that this was the first and the last album. Track 6 states it: “I XIII V XIX XV V XXI XVIII XIX – IX XIX – IV V I IV” (read: Amesoeurs – Is – Dead). Really a pity, I shudder at the thought what might have become of them had they not disbanded. Now the only thing left for me is to hint at a little easter egg: The tracklist resembles a “Space Invaders”-screen (with 00 credits – a clue for a “Game Over”?). Black Metal, Post Rock, Video Games and strange humour – this is all it needs to win me over.
01 – Gas In Veins