A few of weeks ago, I reviewed Alcest’s latest opus – ‘Escailles De Lune’. You could think of this article as something of a sister piece, with Les Discrets featuring on the same label and sporting other musicians from Neige’s world. First showcased in a split CD with Alcest, Les Discrets have obviously drawn influence from their companions, but it would be a crime to place them alongside the multitude of clones which have arisen in the years since ‘Souvenirs D’Un Autre Monde’.
You could label Les Discrets’ music as “metalgaze” (as much as I hate the term), but their approach doesn’t really warrant the tag. Where other bands play atmospheric metal with other influences, the sound here is constructed with a mixture of dark folk and indie rock. Metal isn’t so much as used as a style, but as a tool to broaden the album’s dynamics in a similar fashion to bands such as Agalloch.
The instrumental core is formed by fuzzy electric guitars, folky drums and rich acoustic and bass guitars with keyboards and electronics creating a dense atmosphere as secondary instruments. Fursy Teyssier plays around with this core; adding and removing instruments as he sees fit to achieve the feel he wants that passage to have. He shows great imagination in all areas and Winterhalter supports this vision with his greatly varied and stellar drumwork. Vocals are not as impressive as the rest of the content, but are perfectly adequate. They act as another instrument rather than a frontpiece and add another layer to the atmosphere.
Although the impact of this release may be slightly dampened by the parallel unleashing of Alcest’s masterpiece, ‘September Et Ses Dernier Penses’ is an excellent album which the genre’s followers should undoubtedly hold high as a sublime example of how-to-do-it-right. Greatly recommended to fans of shoegaze, dark folk and atmospheric music in general.
01 – L’envol Des Corbeaux
02 – L’échappée
03 – Les Feuilles De L’olivier
04 – Song For Mountains
05 – Sur Les Quais
06 – Effet De Nuit
07 – Septembre Et Ses Dernières Pensées
08 – Chanson D’automne
09 – Svipdagr & Freyja
10 – Une Matinée D’hiver