If there is one thing the French are delightfully capable of doing, it’s combining their extreme metal with a sense of atonal and experimental dementia, uncompromising dedication and an indecent air of depravity. MÜTIILATION and the diabolic cohorts of the Black Legions, the orthodox DEATHSPELL OMEGA, surrealists BLUT AUS NORD, decadent eclectic junkie DIAPSIQUIR, and more recently the twisted newcomers SMOHALLA (though not that depraved), and the object of this review: LESMENTOR. They, whose upcoming EP release on Diahablerie I have received a copy of, have dug into the utmost depths of diabolically reeking nastiness. Their disjointed expressionist black metal carries the inverted cross of abovementioned Blut Aus Nord (their extensive atonal ramblings) and Diapsiquir (the utterly confused and degenerate mania), skipping across diverse elements in a collage-like fashion, one segment scarier than the other…
The five songs, spanning from 3 to 11 minutes, are driven by the foundation of an overly distorted bass guitar and not seldom untight and standard drumming – the only sane and traditional element in this throbbing heap of nameless and slithering things. Said bass varies between bizarre plodding bass-lines and harsh black riffing, unfortunately very rarely abusing the full extent of this instrument (for nice unsettling bass-only black metal, check out the Black Legions project SUSVOURTRE’s only rehearsal tape). More exciting (and unsettling) are the other elements. Not unlike Blut Aus Nord’s 2006 album MoRT, the vocals of Sable Et Soumise are equally incomprehensible as they are disturbing, swaying from insane laughter to the howls and murmurs of something spectral from beyond, onwards to more distinct black metal growls and chants. I suppose it’s in French, though I can’t really tell.
Disturbing are also the sound effects; nocturnal filth-ridden noises crawling on the cellar floor of whatever deranged minds that made this up, from sombre church-bells and choirs to shrill female screams and black and white noises… but even more disturbing (and frequent!) is the violin. Screeching and wailing and humming, it sounds like a modernist nightmare, ripping fiercely at the sanity of whatever poor soul hears it. As does the piano, though less frequent.
Sable Et Soumise is a nightmare. Not many riffs are worth remembering; what remains after listening is a rather disturbing feeling of having been violated by something esurient and unwholesome thirsting for your soul; background music for a dinner party where the Night-Gaunts live – the tittering shadowlike creatures flying straight from the restless sleep of H.P. Lovecraft. The Horror. The Anguish. Most of you who will listen to this will find it nothing but crappy amateurish black metal… but I tell you (you squares!) – there is more than meets the eye and ear here, and those who dare open specific black doors in your mind, enjoy as LESMENTOR devours your sanity…
2. …sable Et Soumise…