This is the third album from French black metallers Void Paradigm.
Ultime Pulsation | Demain Brûle may only contain two tracks, (Ultime Pulsation and Demain Brûle), but when each is almost 20 minutes in length, there’s no problem with that at all.
This is intelligently crafted black metal, with an experimental streak. The songwriting emphasises an atypical expression of the blackened form, with non-standard time changes, riffs, and composition ideas. This has resulted in music that’s undeniably loosely of the black metal genre, but is distinctly its own beast, with an almost jazz-like interpretation of the style in some regards.
The songs are as intricate and complex as the above would suggest. Frequently the individual instruments all seem to be doing their own things, (including the oft-neglected bass, used very effectively here), yet somehow they all seem to be ultimately working together in concert for the greater good of the music. The apparent chaos of these songs is a smokescreen, of course, as the artists behind Void Paradigm clearly know exactly what they’re doing.
These two songs span a range of moods and feelings though, so it’s not all heavy and chaotic. Shades of light and dark are wielded with equal finesse, the band demonstrating quite conclusively that they’re more than capable of creating huge constantly changing tracks that not only hold the listener’s attention, but fully immerse in its own twisted atmospheres too.
This is shape-shifting black metal, unconcerned with genre conventions, and instead opting to forge its own path. In this, it is to be applauded. It’s great to hear an act do something a bit different with black metal’s base template, especially when it’s as successful as it is here.
Void Paradigm’s unconventional approach to black metal has paid off handsomely with Ultime Pulsation | Demain Brûle. This record is a firm winner, and I’ve fallen for its multifaceted charms harder than I thought I would.
Very highly recommended for connoisseurs of challenging extremity.