- 2.Octobre noir03:18
- 3.Inégalités de Bell05:03
- 4.Sombre marche02:55
I recently received two albums from Vetus Capra, I guess a new and small label from France, one of them is the album I am writing about, at the moment. I am going to start by mentioning the label as it is an unknown label to me, there are no information on the internet about it and the editions of the albums that I received, give an old school, ‘90ies underground vibe that I really liked. So, when I got the cardboard sleeve cd version of Sombre marche limited in fifty copies, I was really excited by the minimal black and white layout, the xerox copied folded page with the lyrics and the cd-r. It is like you have traveled back in time during the best days of the elitist, French Black Metal scene of the ‘90ies. You will not find a lot of information about Vipère, just that they were formed in 2020 and they consist of Sans-Visage who is responsible for the illustrations, guitars, bass and drums and Saros, responsible for vocals, guitars, flute, keyboards and the mixture of the album. Sombre marche, is their first release and it contains four tracks, three Black Metal and one instrumental, atmospheric track, with overall duration of about fourteen minutes.
The music that they present into this release, is harsh, raw, straightforward Black Metal with ugly, fast tremolo riffs, other times warlike and other times more melodic and darker. There are also some minor references to other styles, the most noticeable are the punk elements regarding the mid-tempo, repetitive and highly energetic parts. Moreover, we come across epic melodies which make their appearance quite often here and there and some touches of self-destructing, depressive elements. The medieval, folk elements that the band mentioned that they have, can only be perceived in the last instrumental track, but even there I wouldn’t characterize the track as folk, although it has some folk elements, but as melancholic-atmospheric with epic feeling. The tracks last from two to five minutes and despite their brief duration, they transmit the feeling and the atmosphere of the album as also they manage to give a completion feeling to the listener. Their structure is simple and straightforward, with nice changes in the rhythm, interesting passages and bridges full of feelings, it makes the tracks intelligible to the listener.
The production follows the general atmosphere of the album. The sound is raw and harsh, taking you back in time, when the Black Metal artists wanted to produce the coldest and ugliest feelings. The sound fits perfectly to the music style. The guitars are the ruling instrument and they are played with passion and intensity without lacking in accuracy or technique. The bass is here but its sound is fuzzy and I couldn’t listen to its lines, but it adds a bassy – noisy sound to the compositions. The drums sound is acceptable and their lines are simple but nice, while their performance is stable and passionate without mistakes. The vocals are harsh and noisy Black Metal vocals adding an industrial – cold feeling along with the hatred that they express, while there are some parts that they become deeper or more tortured giving that self-torturing, self-destructing approach. The lyrics of the first track are written in English whereas for the rest of the songs are written in French, they are contained in the cd and they speak of personal views, thoughts and feelings about life with a more pessimistic approach.
In conclusion, Sombre marche, the first demo release of Vipère, has played its role successfully. I mean that it has introduced the band, making a very positive impression, showed only good moments of the band, it is short and to the point, so the fan can receive what is offered, more easily. The best and most versatile track of the album is Inégalités de Bell. I liked this release both for the music offered, but also for the nostalgic and true underground feelings. If you like harsh and straightforward Black Metal, make sure that you check this one out.