Kostnatění – Úpal
Kostnatění is a Black Metal project from D.L. He does all the vocals and plays all instruments except drums, bringing in Andrew Lee to handle those duties. Kostnatění uses a lot of sonic dissonances to create tension, then uses growls in Czech to really amplify the chaos. The tones range from folksy to Arabesque and cover a wide range of microtones between those poles. Clean vocalizations in a backing choir-type format have almost Middle Eastern/Indian undertones, bringing in even more elements to form an amalgam of sounds that challenge the listener to pick out everything possible to be heard on this record.
- D.L.– Vocals/Everything except Drums
- Andrew Lee – Drums
May 26, 2023 – Willowtip Records https://www.willowtip.com/home.aspx
- Řemen (The Belt)
- Hořím Navždy (I Burn Forever)
- Rukojmí Empatie (Hostage Of Empathy)
- Opál (Opal)
- Skrýt Se Před Bohem (Hide From God)
- Nevolnost Je Vše, Čím Jsem (Nausea Is All I Am)
- Slunce Svázáno S Krvácející Zemí (Sun Bound To The Bleeding Earth)
Everything starts with discordant, Arabesque guitar tones and harsh vocals with occasional drumming flourishes. “Řemen (The Belt)” builds from the opening, slowly gaining power and speed as it goes. On about my tenth listen-through, having let it play on loop for quite a while, some of the guitar tones on this track, and even farther down the tracklist, remind me of the KFD album from W.A.S.P. That was one of the darkest that band ever did. A few screams even hint at Blackie Lawless-style vocals as well.
“Hořím Navždy (I Burn Forever)” is just chaos from the start and never gets into typical tonality. At just over eight minutes, it’s the longest song on the album. There is so much noise within the rhythm that it is easy to lose track of the music, yet it always comes back. Repeating patterns seem to bring cohesion where it feels completely disjointed.
The tonality continues much the same through the rest of the record. The tempo changes, and the patterns shift, but the voice stays much the same throughout the whole thing. The album’s middle section has three songs hitting the four-minute mark, running more than the “standard” length of time. That does not mean there is anything standard about this record.
The last two songs are six and seven minutes, respectively. First is “Nevolnost Je Vše, Čím Jsem (Nausea Is All I Am)” and it is wild. The speed, the tuning, the tones, and even the phrasing are all over the place. Then, “Slunce Svázáno S Krvácející Zemí (Sun Bound To The Bleeding Earth)” closes the album out with a frenzied distortion fest. There is so much tension within the compositions that I feel rage when I get to the close of the disc.
The whole album is an experiment is sound textures. Some of them grate on me, which is the point, I think. The fact that this is in another language, but they give you the English titles, means they don’t care if you understand, but they do want you to know the subject. Having this in another language helps create some of the tension, the anger that the music reinforces.
- Guitars – 8
- Rhythms – 8
- Vocals – 8
- Songwriting – 8
- Production – 8
- Overall – 8.00