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'Ad Augusta Per Angusta'   

-  Label: 'Symbol Of Domination Prod.'
-  Genre: 'Heavy Metal' -  Release Date: '30th January 2017'-  Catalogue No: 'SODP089'

Our Rating:
Here's something different.

This Spanish male-female duo comprising Cristina R. Galván (aka 'Lady Carrot') and a guy who goes by the name of Nightmarer serve up an improbable yet fascinating marriage made in hell of gothic traditional folk and black metal.

The tracks on their debut album are adapted from Iberian popular folk songs of the late 19th and early 20th century which have passed from generation to generation by oral tradition but have never sounded like this before.

At first it might make you think of a supercharged Evanescence but this is no mainstream orientated novelty act.

The chalk and cheese of the musical genres are surprisingly complimentary since both depend on high drama and derive from raw sources through passionate dances of love and death, most explicitly in one of the album highlights: Rondón Del Enamorado Y La Muerte.

The blend of Galván's pure, emotionally charged voice (singing in Spanish) and the harsh electric backing is a bold experiment that makes perfect sense.

Probably the best entry point is Señor Platero which combines the rough with the smooth particularly well.

There is subtlety too since Nightmarer's dense riffs are not directed toward some relentless heavy metal overkill. La Deshonra, the longest track, is a relatively sedate tune and throughout the percussive accompaniment to the conventional rock sound of electric guitar, bass and synths comes not from drums but through a range of traditional and improvised instruments including Castillian & Iberian tambourines, cooking utensils (mortar, spoons) and shells.

The duo's eccentric formula may not be one that could be applied ad infinitum but for this album it works a treat.   
  author: Martin Raybould

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AEGRI SOMNIA - Ad Augusta Per Angusta