Review: Leere – Bleak

Posted: August 13, 2015 in Reviews
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If I had to pick one word to describe Leere’s new record, the title pretty much sums it up. This is dark, bleakly atmospheric black metal that owes much to the early nineties scene, and is an extraordinarily cold and heartless record.

‘Expanding Isolation’ is raw, icy in its stark melancholy. Leere’s focus is upon that strain of hypnotic, monochromatic black metal that serves to transport you to the snowy forests of the north. Vocalist Sarcamon has a croaking rasp that is surprisingly understandable, and the harsh tones mesh well with the unforgiving guitar tone and thick atmosphere. The relentless buzz of ‘Roots in a Skull’ feels almost like Wolves in the Throne Room if they were more necro and raw.

‘Jorias’ is a tour de force of atmospheric black metal, clocking in at eight minutes plus and it feels very old school, as does the more melodic strains of ‘Spiritual Emigration’. ‘Bleak’ is a very organic record, coupling a vintage strain of black metal with a versatile vocalist works wonders for the songs, and for the overall presentation. Closing titan ‘Empty Infinity’ plays around with moody ambience, with a lone piano tinkling out some eerie chords and notes. It throbs with an uneasy malevolence that permeates the rest of the song, dragging you in to a strange dark place.

‘Bleak’ is a fascinating snapshot into what is considered to be ‘classic’ black metal. These Swiss folk have created something ruthlessly old fashioned, yet vibrant enough to warrant repeated listens. Thoroughly and unashamedly old school, ‘Bleak’ is a must for those of us that want it no other way.

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