Amidst the Cold
Media Tree Records
It’s Montreal. It’s January. It’s the dead of winter. You are sad. You drink. You are drunk. The night consumes you. You begin life anew, shedding materialism for a back-to-the-earth pagan hedonistic existence. You worship the moon and the darkness.
This is your soundtrack.
Ensorcelor are arguably Montreal’s premier blackened doom-mongering horde, straight out of the burgeoning St. Henri scene surrounding the Death Church and Fattal. They work to channel the pitch-black feeling that frozen earth imposes on us, forging sweeping, riff-laden landscapes of snow-covered vastness.
While their bloated, fuzz-drenched and bass-heavy licks slather you in a miasmic mist of despair they always provide a strong guiding light, whether in the agonized bellowing of their bearded wizard frontman, an acoustic guitar passage or an electric lead.
Comprised of two epic journeys through dearth and desolation and clocking in at just 35 minutes, Crucifuge opens with “By Mycomancy Insumed,” a rallying ode to sharing in the earthen chemical excesses of witches in this season of decay. The title track exceeds its precursor in length by a daunting six minutes, and is a bleak anthem of necessarily solitary defiance against the flock.
It’s only once Ensorcelor have succeeded in dragging you into the darkened depths of their sonic pit of misery that they invoke a triumphant coda, bidding the listener a send-off akin to a burial at sea. This makes their mournful mammoths come off like invigorated fist pumpers at quarter-speed and leaves the listener desperate for more. Luckily, the record has high rotation endurance.
Oh yeah, and their singer uses a tree as a mic stand.
Ensorcelor / Feb. 17 / Il Motore (179 Jean Talon Rd. W.)
View Sam Rosenberg’s blog at jesustrashcan.blogspot.com