(I, Voidhanger Records, 2014)
Tongues is the Great Work of two Danes going by the names Qvortrup and Thorbjörn, and this is pretty much all we know of the band, although their music consists of somewhat familiar components.
The album starts with an Ambient intro reminiscent in feelings of the album-cover artwork, after which we are mentally attacked with ferocious and truly twisted-sounding partly dissonant-sounding Black Metal, bringing to mind all these “Occult” and “Spiritual” bands which draw their inspirations from bands like Deathspell Omega (not a fully fair comparison here though), but also with a hint of Portal (if they were a more clear-sounding Black Metal band). Still, Tongues do have a personal sound, making their debut-EP quite a fresh listening experience.
The guitar-sounds are pretty distorted and clear, bringing both Death and Black Metal to my mind, in sounds as in the nature of the riffs. Nevertheless, there is something really unique to Tongues in these riffs. The vocals sound sometimes high and screaming Black, sometimes more low and growling Deathly, sometimes I’m even hearing straight old Beherit-worship in there. The overall spectrum of the vocals performed on this release is however pretty vast, with all kind of cool parts here and there to spice the experience up.
The drums are played with the demanded feeling and skill, and their sound is good enough, fitting the overall sounds well. There is also a part with ethnic percussions added on top (or beneath) the main drums, which sound cool. At parts the band may theow for example a d-beat Thrashy part in the midst of all the Death Black chaos, and this combined with the more clear shouting vocals, bring to my mind the logics of Teitanblood, without totally sounding like a copy.
The songs have such an amount of riffs and good playing, this release can be enjoyed as a trip into well-performed extreme Metal music, but as the atmosphere surrounding these songs is so great, they can also be taken as conveyors of deep Spiritual states. Magickal stuff for sure. For example the final song could work on it’s own as one of the best Ambient Ritual musick I’v ever heard.
I would recommend the band to take all the elements which make them personal and separate them from the trends of “Spiritual” Black Metal at the moment, and run with them to their studio (temple) next time, only to emerge with a next release of even higher and more original Art. However, this is such a strong start for this band, and as I am enjoying the material the more I listen to it, I have to heartily recommend this to all into the aforementioned bands (whom know what I’m talking about).
8.5/10 – Antti Mikonmäki