Despre Normalitate (Decembrie 2011)

 •  Posted in: Kogaionon Editorials

Last minute greetings… from 2011! 

I just found out I can pay my Christmas in installments without interests… but if I'm late paying the installment, the penalties will kill me… that's what I call encouraging consumption growth… meaning the ones officially dealing with usury show us they have a human face, that they're thinking of poor consumers… and the Black Friday concept implemented here as well wrecked havoc and spectacular sales… wherefrom so much money? One shouldn't dare to say Romanians are poor… we have the highest ownership percentage from UE, so it doesn't make sense… this is how a simple English translation for a worn-out expression would sound like… the next step is discussing Cyber Monday… then we're crazy for sure… we breath only flavours and marketing strategies… we lost the notion of real or normal…  for example, who said we're drinking sparkling water? Wrong! We're drinking a certain brand belonging to the sprakling water category (the purest and best), we cough or it sticks in our gizzard if we try something else… everything is induced, manipulated, pumped up, presented and directed towards being seen thorugh horse goggles, even though it's tridimensional now and soon we won't need any goggles, if we want to keep it up with the trend and future… and we can endlessly develop topics of branding, clothes, food, cars, electronics, to music, bands… quality is on the second plan, the marketing and PR driver counts most nowadays, pompous, innovative presentations, rich in special offers lure the consumers so we run, run, run… after things we must catch, whether we relate to the "it's better to try and not like it than being sorry for not trying" syntagm…then the enlightened ones come who induce us it's better to think positive, that every bad thing is for the best and we should be less uptight and tense (that's a smart way to escape, but who has time for that)… and we keep running, running, running… without seeing that we're actually on a conveyor, controlled by unseen faces… we get to run after fancier and fancier labels and wrappings, but we don't realize that we sometimes pay more than the content… that the bulk is not hygyenic, fashionable and noble anymore…the smaller the size/weight of the object, the more we pay for the wrapping (procentually)… and we have artists who create perfectly the illusion of personal satisfaction, fulfillment and unique perfection through comparisons,but presenting those as a unique work, applied on the client's request… meaning yours… it might be false, it might be not, each with his own resonance… the branding and marketing manipulation can be briefly summarized in the following way:

  • Do you see this mountain?
  • What mountain?
  • This in front of you.
  • It's not a mountain, it's a hill.
  • You're wrong, look, we even have experrts/technocrats who can confirmt his fact.
  • I don't know what they see, for me it's still a hill… where I've spent my childhood and my grandfather told me the hill has an odd name…
  • Good man, you refuse to see what everyone sees… normality… the obvious. And your grandfather is no more, you were too little back then… Wake up!
  • Damn me if  don't see a hill!
  • You know that saying, don't you/ When 3 people are telling you you're drunk, you go to sleep!
  • Anyway, I know from the grandfather that, in the given example, I really have to start drinking, but I definitely won't go to bed…


From the given example derives another topic, not necessarily complimentary, but existent.  The strength, firmness and verticality of these people who keep believing in their own hisory and old, simple landmarks, was translated by controllers as a not grafted, rebel, primitive, meaningless stupidity and stubborness… As long as we relate to different value systems, when we forget about simplicty and complicate more than we need to fit in the required standars, we'll always have the impression that something's wrong… or missing.. and we keep running to find out what… And through this modernist run, we quantify everything in money, through selling/buying, we impose to accept there is no priceless, unquantified, unevaluated… we transform the need in speculation and change our verticality in trade. This "new" normality seems pretty cool… you're in th system, you win (more or less, but you don't lose… and if you lose something, the controllers come to tell you it could have been eorse)… if you are not part of the system, you isolate yourself… but what, do the controllers leave yo to live peacefully? No way, they are expansive, they hover about unless you say yes… this is the recipe for success… their success! I would translate it as intellectual prostitution without you can't live, unfortunately… and it's very hard to fully renounce… you really must understand where to stop, thich I the limit of compromise you have to make to yourself in order to stay vertical… "Spiritual starvation"  is the most torturer way of getting lost in the labyrinthic tangle of the present and finding yourself can't be accomplished unless we admit we're able to void running… to spend more time with ourselves, to give ourselves more time, in peace, in silence, not necessarily analytical… I'm beating it way around the bush, but it's a preamble for what I will soon write… 

I see on the TV that I have to understand the new concept of "Normal Romania"… what the hell does that mean? Meaning I have to buy an imported car by Tiriac's representant? Will I be normal then? In the Moldavian Republic, if you ask someone "How are you?", he will answer: "Normal"… yeah, let us all become normal, for now we're twisted… only us… the others are set on right clusters… Maybe the first reaction of the Patriarchate's spokesman is normal too, the one who took action when finding out the Mother Superior gave birth: "She will surely be excluded from the nunnery and will become a random woman, who will be able to bring up her children!" So Mother Superior will become normal, random… until now she was above humanity… and is she gave birth to souls, she retrograded, got in line with people, normality… The next day a new press release came out, wiser and more levelheaded, that balances fornication with the joy of souls coming in this world… This faith and its interpretation by false wizards! 

In our politics in which everybody spits harder, Geoana continues to tell himself everynight in the mirror: "Mihaela, I won", because no one else has anything to do with him… Ponta proves that it is only a protocol/puppet accepted by the one (Iliescu) that destroyed out youth and aspirations towards a democrat life, ofering a wooden language, crypto-comunistic… Nastase is still playing at the buttons of manipulation and continues to count the eggs of party members.

Antonescu's, Orban's and the rest of the clique's strategy is to create their visibility using the non-Basescu word... Patriciu is busy shutting down his grocery network as fast as he opened it, through which he declared he would promote romanian products and would offer a lot of working places… the sailor president continues to talk much and say nothing except those nationalist demagogues… Boc continue to speak in the bag and to consider  himself the saviour of the nation in these hard times… the rest of the party who is not in the party, but is in the Parliament, see their own interest, and less of the national interest… and there are those who have started on a road and then twisted proximately, who do not have anything to say anyway, but can still play to make strategic alliances… who will I vote for next year? Well, they are all the same… this is normal. 

I'll come right up with the topic of media normality... 

I can't not recommend you this beautiful documentary movie which reminds us that the pride of living in Romania has no reason to be exaggerated… that it has been made by foreigners is no surprise: 

And because today is the birthday  which gravitates around the names Andrei and Andreea, "Happy Birthday" to all of you and read the article written by Mihnea Badea for a symposium, in which he develops old agricultural rituls from the autumn-winter period: 

Otherwise, what else does the daily offer us apart from stress and slices crisis? An euro that falls down looking at the dollar cowboy who keeps being universal on all continents… a possible war with major implications in the Middle East where americans, chinese and russians are already showing their muscles… A german is really upset because the Pope drove without a seatbelt and sued him… the greeks are bankrupt but still have chances if they respects certain steps… at least this is what the germans tell us, the ones that have benefited the most out of this crisis… the french don't speak any other language except german when it comes to economy politics… the italians got rid of Berlusconi and from now on await for bee's honey on all the roads, Spain voted for change ( whatever this change is ) … Daddy Putin is heading surely towards a new form a dictatorship embalmed with retrogressive nationalist messages… Norway decided that the killer of those innocent souls is mad and should be trated as such… just natural abnormalities for senile indoctrinates in troubled times simulated in experiences… or normalities, maybe? 

I should talk about a lot in this last Editorial, to make synthesis and retrospective to what has happened this year, and bla-bla's and others… Who know what I will be writing after all… I just know that I have been wanting for a few days to point out about "Europa Libera" of the third millenium, the internet, the only source in Romania where you can find out things other that collosal media manipulation… and I will make a specific zoom on Facebook, meaning that I am lucky because I have an account there and I was able to read and see about events, protests, ideas concerning sensitive subjects, that have not appeared in the free press nowdays ! 

In the past weeks there have been movements and expressions of idead worth watching ( as a simple romanian who wishes to inform, to vote, to be responsible, as my dad used to tell me many years ago and I used to flake him saying that he was coming to me with cheap and old gibberish). Well, probably my son is saying the same about me, or he will be saying when he will grow up… who knows… although, in my nostalgia, I still believe that "the seven years from home" imprint on the future of every rational and aware person… What the hell does it mean today to be aware? I'll remain on a retoric state, because otherwise I will start writing dozens of pages… 

Now there is the subject of Rosia Montana… and on the T.V., on every channel I've been, I haven't found anything else except those customized commercials, real as language but pathetic and manipulative as message, made to arouse emotions and probably frustrations, or maybe used so that the leaders of opinion are posed exactly on their interestant, aware or not. 

It's sad but disappointing that I can't find any news ( papers, TV, radio) about the fact that a hanful of people abusively occupied the building of the old Continental hotel in the center of Cluj Napoca as a protest against cyanide… but to see that a preist was accused of rape… to not find out that a group of people protested quietly in some cities in the country, for several minutes, laying on the ground, holding a candle in their hands, simbolizing the result of the cyanide that is supposed to be used in the exploitation… but to see that a minor car crash took place on an unknown street… or that there were protests at the TV headquarters where people manifested quietly, symbolically, with a patch over their mouth and where it was clear that representatives o the press were photographing and filming what was happening… but it never appeared on the news… on the other hand, cheap gossip and balkanisms on all the media channels, both as news and as a promoted and developed message. 

Isn't it outrageous that we don't care? Isn't it not shameful that we don't notify ourselves, that we do not realise that through our ignorance"assumed/ excused" and "reconciled" to become involuntarily responsible to what happens every day? That, although there are over 20 years since the great crowd of December '89, or a few months later, from the University Square events, we returned to censorship, only  this time it is one indirectly payed from our money?

As those who believe in a particular case and who peacefully advocate for their belief in not paid by "foreigners" are not "destabilizing elements"… and that it would be needed... heh… for the miners to cleans the capital of these "junkies". There were some conflicts between the police and these militants but who knows what's to reality. Luckily it hasn't gone up to this… although the mass of miners has been missing from years… we were still too independent with exploitation from standardized enrolling to which we had to rally… 

I'm not talking here about who is right in this struggle for and against Gold Corporation, for I have no data and this emotive militancy  arouses smiles and admiration but not practical solutions… but I'm interested in opinions… and why can't we find out other points of view? Since when is the president telling us what it right and what is wrong in a project where the state is not the majority shareholder or it is not of national importance? Why  should we move people who don't want to leave their homes, even if we offer them the possibility of giving up their traditional way of living to spend their old age in residential neighbourhoods, in a civilized manner? Civilized for whom? For those, which in 10 years, will be arguing among themselves fir an extra kopeck from the sale of land and houses, which will be destroyed or flooded in cyanide anyway? Why take advantage of the poverty and the despair of helpless souls, forgotten and abandoned by our system decayed bu transition, indiference and hyppocrisy, and then make TV commercial about the sad and cruel reality known by everyone, that is everywhere… but in Rosia Montana there is gold…and silver… and probably wolfram… and uranium…si many others… no worries, we've already showed that we know how to sell not only what we have here… but also our future resources, from underground… and what happened? The poor in rich countries became even more poor, and the people in poor countries got rich… or at least, in poor areas, because the term of "country" is obsolete for a big family such as The European Union, where nobody understands what's happening but everybody feels that there is something unhealthy, that the declared liberty is just a pale aroma of the perceptions and beliefs of each rebel individual who wants to look honestly in his own mirror… 

Anyway, it is painful there we do not have political debates about this important exploitation project, that there aren't correct SWOTs being made and the advantages/disadvantages are not being put out there, whatever they are… Only in this way we can find out how we should thing, how to support and understand correctly, even in a pragmatic way, oportunities that we can exploit efficiently, correctly ( with a bigger state participation in the profit than the actual one), transparently, with compromises asumed by everyone, for the better of community, but in respect and according to nature… otherwise, as I've previously said in an Editorial, we move the Ada Kaleh to the mountains. 

I found, however, on the TV, a point of view about Rosia Montana, and the charismatic presenter Moise Guran succeeding, lately, to have the most interesting, dynamic and explicit broadcast onany romanian TV channel: Time For Business. Although it started fiercly and  said correct things, some unsaid and unknown to public opinion, he hits the wall in the end, when he dilutes the existing situation by blaming the politicians, meaning everybody and no one… But I recommend you watch how he develops the subject of marketing from behing the Rosia Montana brand, and not only, because it's worth it: 

I'll get to music now, which seems to be a beautiful artistic expression, less conditions by everyday items …I would have wanted to organise something of the 5th of May with a Metal band that I appreciated since its beginning… actually,  I think it is the only old Metal band that I continue to listen to with pleasure… it didn't work out, even though I struggled for over a year… maybe it would've worked out, just that the stress was too big and other logistic and temporal obstacles appeared, so I said "pass"… maybe the energies were not to be directed now to a strong desire of mine… I understood from the agent that there are 4 other promoters from our lands that are trying the same thing, which pleased me greatly, because if I retired, there is still someone else willing and capable of bringing the norwegians in Bucharest… hopefully we'll see the band in Romania too, because it is worth it! 

More than likely that 2012 will be the wear then DonisArt will return to its origins, will retire in the shell and will focus only on DBE… and maybe there will be an event in  the theater room at Reduta, in Brasov, at the end of March, not to forget the Special Evenings. Other than that, motivation has dissipated, the feeling started to become repetitive… and worse, I have the feeling that I became a slave to these events… which change the way of priorities... On the other hand, I'm so glad that there are increasingly many promoters who bring quality bands from the undergroung, I don't see why I should do it anymore, especially since these bands started touring, which is easier from every point of view…but it does not resonate woth what I've done so far and with my initial ideas… I've only had MONO touring and it was nice… far not enough for me, because I wanted to show them the beauty around here, spend more time with them, find more about the people behind their music, about what they are thinking… anyway, this is the great disadvantage of tours… more pressing and time pressure that creates more stress than pleasure… it could be adrenaline for some…or joy/fulfillment for organising such events… or that they make some money out of this…or a little bit of everything… this had to be a job too, a way of survival or of making an impressive business card, first of all to thank the dwarfs on your brains… but I don't see myself in such movies, even if I appreciate them and support them with dear heart…I feel more free and unconditioned to do independent things, atypical, specific (album releases, first time appearances…) where the financial concept or sinergic don't decide the direction to follow, events that have to be enforced only as "they embroid" to be… but content with the idea that the Underground Spirit continues to exist. This is why DonisArt only brought first-time bands, which haven't played before in Romania, which haven't been invited due to lack of notoriety and that we've considered to have something interesting to show to those who want to discover other artistic expressions, more or less classical, more or less "with the flow"… but of quality and with total determination. 

I would be glad if it were to exist in the musical press this Spirit… unfortuntely, reviews are still black market material and interviews prepared thoroughly and rare elements… 

Getting back to concerts, I already see annunced for spring Anneeke( ed-THE GATHERING), ENDSTILLE… then the OST which transforms from Moutain to Urban and becomes o clear competitor with B'est Fest, with bands like DIMMU BORGIR or MOTORHEAD… and the list will be long, with different bands, with other big headliners… A festival that was supposed to exist in Bucharest, one with true Metal/Rock. I was talking to dozens of people as target of participation, so a festival too big for my taste. For those who know, from the 15th to the 17th of June there is also HELLFEST, with a spectacular line-up 

On the seconds weekend of July, Mihnea/OST/CAVALLERIA will be putting the base of a new putdoor festival, GHOST, which has much to do with the old OST, which makes me support him as much as I can… The bands seem to fit exactly on the DBE branch, which is good, because in this way we can contour a community of fans, not just separated by their musical styles. The location is still at Rasnov, there's a nice line-up and there seems to be a great opportunity to see something interesting, with underground bands.  Could it be a potential canibalization with the DBE public? Actions of this caliber canibalize with every flavour of rain or malaise of the moment, so the few potential hundreds of souls don't matter in any logical algorithm… but who said that we are doing something logical? 

In the second weekend of August there's Artmania, at Sibiu, and this year I'm expecting it to be a big bomb! With 2 stages already, the addressability of the organisers should be for the mainstream Rock/Metal bands as well as for the underground bands, which will give the correct expansion to a festival of quality the I've appreciated and supported all the time… even if the last 2 editions have neglected the underground… maybe we will see here SIGUR ROS, EVANESCENCE or PORCUPINE TREE…probably MY DYING BRIDE again, if there will not be presure in other festivals…up to now they have announced DELAIN and TRAIL OF TEARS…

Next weekend (17-18) DBE 4 will take place…another kind of artistic expression, another approach regarding a weekend spent nicely, an escape from daily rutine together with beautiful souls that support the Underground Spirit…in a myserious castle, in a hallucinating venue in terms of dynamics and perception…with less known bands of different styles (many being different even from what you have seen this year) that make their appearance in Alba Iulia unconditionally for…a New Ritual! 

There are questions about what DBE 4 will be like…I will start working on presenting the new edition, just that I still have KRUNA 3-ROME and ALTERVATIVE to prepare, on the 3rd of December, as well as on 15th of December…

Not even my free time is very generous with me at the end of this year. I have actually liked the bands that will be there, some confirmed 100%, some still need a bit of time to set the rest of the details…they are not bands that make a living out of just selling their albums and gigs, so they have to set other priorities as well, mainly because we are talking about an event that will take place in many months… 

I considered other suggestions as well, also changed the format a bit, in the way that there won't be only 6 bands per night, but probably 8. Since there is a limit of hours during the night (this year we had some complaints from the neighbours on this matter), I will have to decide if I will shorten the gigs or start earlier…eventhough it's a bit too warm to start at noon…the news about music will be different as well, in the way that besides Metal and Neofolk, we will have some pure Post-Rock and Post-Industrial or Experimental based on interesting combinations between improvising and visual…or even insertions of Country/ Americana Rock…Jazz…Psychedelic/ Occult…a wider variety, but just as Dark mentality- and expression-wise. 

For this edition there won't be any Romanian bands, but we will have artists from over 10 countries…There were a lot of requests for big bands, the fact that the bands had to have their first appearance there was mostly taken in consideration (definite condition at Donis Art), so that ULVER, CULT OF LUNA or ENSLAVED matched the first rule. On the other hand, any of these bands represents maximum interest for the Romanian fans (and not only), but DBE doesn't support bands as having the headliner statute…and I don't think these bands would need support or promotion within the Platform…Plus the fact that in the case of these bands, we are talking about a whole financial institution and logistics that would not resonate with the 'simplicity' and 'modesty' given by the organizers. 

DBE will remain as an Underground Platform, having as mission to discover less promoted artists in mainstream circles, that have something special to present live! Or artists that, as licensed as they may have become, respect the Underground Spirit and they want to come and discover new experiences, not only just to have another performance.

It is the same ritual that Kogaionon magazine respected dating back to the first issue in 1995, when it promoted completely unknown bands at that time, but with great potential. OPETH, LACRIMOSA, IN THE WOODS… 

The price of the tickets has not been established yet, they will be between 35-40 euros for both days, but they will not create any pressure on those interested, because they will only be available in the days of the event, with no impact on the cash or with promotional offers in advance. Obviously the reservation system works for those who are already determined to participate, by requests sent to . 

On the other hand, our friends from RYMA are really taking care of making things beautiful over there, especially since the work around there has been finished, so no dust and more light… Well, dark light, heh… let's hope that the camping facility will double-up, if all works well… let's keep out fingers crossed for them! 

And towards the end of summer, the festivals in Vama Veche will alternate with Peninsula, where the fight over the headliners will be spectacular... 

I'm expecting to see Nelu/Maximum Rock organise an outdoor festival… but also Coro/ Axa Valaha with his partners, which have organised 2 outstanding editions of  Rock Legends, but also other involved in this syndrome, why not even Metal musicians.. 

Festivals outside of the country  will outshine ours and the bigger one will overshadow the small ones... the road to the store shelves after over-saturated promotions highlightly translated onto the concert market, where as much people as possile will hurry up to grab a special offer before it is sold-out, running (un)consciously after marketing message in which the believe or they consider it is cool to believe in! And it is good, this is out ignorant lethargy appears, comodity… a sure way for bands to continue living, because from the merchandise  market you can't really see a positive trend. It is a possible reverse of the medal, because the panic of collecting never lets you think rationally… if it is a will to choose…probably the financial limitation will say its word, in the end…and the concept of all-inclusive (meaning hundreds of bands and thousand of fans in the same place, at the same time) will come first in the final decision… 

I can't stop being pleased at how tickets for a festival which I like (only from stories and friends), ROADBURN, manage to be sold online in a short period of time… this year in just 7 minutes! And we're not talking about the madness the Iron Maiden or Metallica will be playing. It is a cult festival, with a sincere and correct destination for the thousand of fans who find themselves inf a community that doesn't follow the popularity of participating bands… We have there the Roadburn Spirit, it is something mysterious, attractive, captivating, which has developed incredibly over the period of the 16th editions so far. And even if the tendency of the majority is the want a festival to grow, organisers are too stubborn to change the place where it's held… my total respect to those who participate at ROADBURN every year! I'll probably get there one day! 

Right away, right away, I'm getting to the most expected subject of the Editorial ( seems like too many deviations from the musical line), albums from the Playist… a bunch of bands, lots of material that I don't have time to remember completely here, most of them without a message or expressivity, but other with some lights and positive emotions about which I have already writtenor about which I will write right now some ideas… as usual, I only make reviews for albums which I consider to be spectacular, so I will not write about metarials that don't inspire or excite me… maybe it is not a typical rule…but who said I am a writer or a journalist? 

Duncan comes with an introverted debut, but captivant if you have the state: 

ORANSSI PAZUZU ravaged me in the correct meaning of the word with this new album: 

ISOLE have shown me that Doom Metal doesn't die and elements inserted in classical form integrate beautifully: 

ALCEST cast us into a world created only by them: 

A musical jewel that invites you to a pilgrimage of the soul is SYVEN: 

A collaborator of  Kogaianon remained captivated by OMITIR, so I've left his statement untouched: 

From the current playlist I would like to mention a first surprise: a band of which i've never heard off, but that blew me off my feet: INNER TRIP... it is an extraorinary solo project, which approaches the Experimental side in an engaging form, mixing the less original but spectular styles like Trip-Hop, Modern Classical, Ambient. 100% Intrumental, with a pronounced cinematic print, INNER TRIP is an experimental Dark incursion in a world where only THE KILIMANJARO DARKJAZZ ENSEMBLE could step… and THEODOR BASTARD could have his place there, but without the voice… A truly fascinating debut! The guys from Denovali should bite their nails because he hasn't seen this Saman N before!  

Another suprising thing for my ears, which has fascinated from the first listen ISOBEL & NOVEMBER, a great band, with a discrete visibility, unfortunately… maybe just important for some because they have played along with WOVENHAND… To me, these artists are amazing! Per-Erik, the vocal of the swedish band earlier mentioned, decided to launch a solo album, under the name COULISSES, which, in the first phase, has the format of an EP.  That it is Neofolk, Rock, Country, American… it doesn't even matter, I absolutely love the three songs, you can listen to them right here: 

From Canada I've llistened to a re-edit of a splendid album, "Octobre", made by a very interesting Instrumental Post-Rock band, KIMIKA. One can find in these arrangements the melancholia from EXPLOSIONS IN THE SKY, PG.LOST or THIS WILL DESTROY YOU. Even though is has nothing new in the structure of its composition, KIMIKA manages to fascinate me continuosly with every combination… Dedicat to those who listen with pleasure to CECILIA EYES! 

Remaining at Post-Rock, with another sensational band, HEIRS! Denovali knows how to make a great job and these australians are going to release these days an EP which I recommend from the bottom of my heart!  Curious is that I haven't heard of them from their label and they've heard of mine and DBE from ALCEST, which had a concert in Australia recently… and people say there are bounderies, heh! I've had the pleasure to listen to "Fowl" also, they previous album, which sounds just as interesting, but a bit more static. "Hunter" is a damn interesting combination of Post-Rock and Dark Wave, walking through COIL, SWANS and COCTEAU TWINS, with shrouding rhythms, playful effects and electronic inserts such as GOD IS AN ASTRONAUT, yet with an accent inspired from the Wave-ul of the 80's. Check out the video here and you will realize that my words are not in vain, I really recommend them to you: 

And you can also grab a CASPIAN material with the audio representation of a concert held within a chucrch…What can I say more: fragile, descreet but intense…these Post – Rock Americans are phenomenal! 

From another perspective, Heavy Psychedelic Rock tends to grasp more and more souls as we speak, and this genre reinvaded the musical scene in America, with Europe developing during recent years lots of bands with a Hippy or Flower Power message. Some are quite good, others are just copying but it is clear that the 70's are resurrecting during these years filled with turmoil! Especially that granddaddy Ozzy decides to get up on stage again with BLACK SABBATH, one of the greatest news this year…and rumors have it they're releasing an album next year! ORANGE GOBLIN is, perhaps, the most important exponent of this genre and looks like their seventh album will be released in February, and it is flawless! But the old influences are still to visible, which makes me take a serious step behind. THE FLYING EYES is one of the bands presenting a more dear to me Psychedelic approach, an interesting debut, which I recommend to all SOLSTAFIR fans, to see two different musical backgrounds sith similar notes on some passages.

With Heavy Psichedelic touches, more to Occult Doom, but with a liniar and repetitive approach (mantras, maybe) are the Dutch from THE DEVIL'S BLOOD,  who present an long expected album…I've listened to it very carefully, hoping to grasp me, but it didn't…maybe during a live performance I could enter the hypnotic musical aura developed, but, through my ear phones it didn't really impress me at all. It's the same with GHOST, a band regarded by everybody as sensational…maybe if I see them on stage I'll change my opinion. Perhaps I should go to Roadburn, as bands like this are heavily consumed there.

On the other hand, re-edting THEWOUNDED KINGS' debut is genius, a Psycho Doom highly intense! And more to Stoner Rock, SVOLK, a group that didn't greatly enchant me, but it's worth giving them a shot…who know! 

STEVEN WILSON, ANATHEMA, RADIOHEAD or PINK FLOYD fans will be fascinated with the recent AIRBAG studio album, a Norwegian Classical Rock project, that atmospherically entwines Progressive Rock with Alternative genres…I'm not a fan of this kind, but I enjoyed this album a lot! 

Almost forgot to mention this month's achievement for me, the re-editing of the second album of the cult band, UNHOLY! After BATHORY, KATATONIA and IN THE WOODS…, the Finns represent the most interesting Dark band of the 90's, in the first half of the decade! The Dark Doom Death presented hasn't been matched until now, and this album is a collectable, along side KATATONIA's first. There are some shy rumors that the band starts rehearsing…I'd go anywhere in Europe just to see them performing live. The Peaceville released edition comes with a bonus DVD, containing a concert from 1994, filmed in harsh condition, but which went straight to my heart. For all the Dark Doom Death depressive moods fans! 

CHASMA offers a Cascadian Black Metal in all its splendor, suited for the WOLVES IN THE THRONE ROOM, FAUNA or KRALLICE fans…although there are only 3 songs, this half an hour values the music of these Americand of whom we'll surely hear soon! 

ABIGAIL WILLIAMS continues the American Black Metal exploration, this new album is superior to the previous, both as execution and structure…I didn't really listen carefully to it until now but I've discovered some new elements in their sound, so I hope I'll be willing to give it more tries…EBONYFLAKE is a band dead for the last 15 years…I remember getting their album from Cacophonous and trying for few days to review it…Now the band is reborn and released an album recently, as tangled as in the past. Their furious Black Metal is really twisted, enveloping but also cursive on places. There's also GrindCore, Classical and Doom…there's something for everybody, but hard to stomach. I'll be damned if I understand something from this album, perhaps it's too avant-garde even for me! 

BURZUM re-edits famous old songs in a new shape, remastered, but sounding awesome! 

RITUALS OF THE OAK, some sort of SOLITUDE, FORSAKEN or FUNERAL, but their Doom Metal becomes, after only a few keys, pretty boring…or, perhaps, too melodious and slow? 

The combination between PARADISE LOST, MY DYING BRIDE and AT THE GATES leads to VALLENFYRE, a Death Metal project with some Doom and Gothic elements, for the nostalgic ones! The time has come for Mackintosh to growl…a lot! I've been expecting much more, especially because some of them created a respected musical genre!

LVCIFYRE shows us that Death Metal isn't dead and this new album with occult accents easily tops the latest MORBID ANGEL or IMMOLATION! 

Moving on to the avant-garde, we find BOTANIST, maybe too violent for my ears but also too stylistically complicated…but also the new GOLDEN DAWN, a project of whom no one heard in years. If you like KOROVA KILL or the new CHRYST, try GOLDEN DAWN! Some 15 yeahrs ago this band really defined itself from the rest of the groups that were good, but had no identity. Now, the message of the new maerial seems a bit old…perhaps a new album? Seems the breake made them loose at least a tempo…

From Solitude Productions, FADING WAVES clinged on my retina with a simplist album, but touching the Post Metal side with quite some inspiration, containing too many ideas incoherently put, but they seem to promise a nice future. 

(ECHO) is an Italian band that really surprised me in a good way…and not only because they collaborated with ESOTERIC's Greg Chandler for the album, but also because their Doom Death Metal has it all: Funeral, Melodical, Classical, Depressive, Drone…and there clean growl singing but also choirs used delicately…the (ECHO) music is like a journey to unknown, where melancholy blends with despair, and sandness and nostalgia mark introspective echoes. For SWALLOW THE SUN, SATURNUS, KATATONIA, ESOTERIC fans.  

TEARS OF MANKIND develops a new form of Doom Death Metal with gothic tendencies, quite crazy in expressing and expired for our times…but which can appeal to LAKE OF TEARS fans, for example. SEPTIC MIND releases a third album, cleverly made, quite Experimental but also with a Funeral Doom Metal remarkable touch! The Russians think that they are from the same gang as COMATOSE VIGIL, with same fans…3 songs, 60 minutes, only 2 musicians…can you imagine what pleasurable audition, with long, slow parts, with powerful growl and effects in the background! Also I found many echoes from SKEPTICISM! 

And there would still be lots to talk about my playlist albums, but I've lost my patience, motivation and interest for the moment! Last year's resolution for 2011 was to publish once a month, with a playlist included…seems it worked, although sometimes quite wretched because of my time and mood! Now, my resolution for 2012 is to go with the flow…what will be, will be and that's that…or maybe not! May we have health, strength, patience and the disposition to talk to ourselves…and so maybe we'll cross out paths, among the written ones, or the told or the staged up… 

May your winter be filled with snow and utter beauty! 

Your friend,