Sort Vokter

After the black metal fanfare faded the one-person projects in aggressive ambient music emerged, including this tribute to the stylings of Burzum and the composition of Darkthrone, which features Sort Vokter's patterned mix of rigid beats and soaring, ambient, melodic guitar. (Essentially the same band as Ildjarn/Ildjarn-Nidhogg.)
flag of Norway Sort Vokter - Folkloric Necro-Metal (1997)
Folkloric Necro-Metal
Norse League Productions/Napalm Records
Production: Fuzzbox abstract and expansive production holds gellified the roaring harshness of a digitally-distorted, cheaply twisted guitar.

Review: Using simple engaging rhythm and ambient serpentine shifting riffs over a stable background of rigid reflector beats Sort Vokter spin out black metal melodies through a sequence of riff changes in rhythm and phrase over the central pulse, in a throwback to electronic music, unchanging through the duration of each song. Variation on the structural level emerges throughout the work, including but not limited to intensely convoluted tempo changes, hints of polyrythm in bridges and intros, syncopation and vocal emphasis to underly percussion domination of rhythmic texture. Although as harshly designed and aesthetically distorted as any other form of black metal (with notable quotations and aspirations toward Darkthrone-ism) the music here is so well constructed that it is pacific, lucid, abstract, astonishing.

As a subliminal but meta-textureal constructive entity, the rhymthic emphasis of a sequence of phrases and the melody behind a sequence of riff mutations are the central organizational elements that unify the diversity of deliberately chaotic, rhythmically recursive, and abrasive riffing with the impassive coherence and impermeable inertia of the techno-inspired, often polyrhythmic percussion. In unearthly poetic cadence vocals of searing belligerence understate a leading theme in rhythmic emphasis and conclusive harmony; with subletly the amphibian riff beneath melts and reforms, a masterpiece of intricate but simple strumming in an elaborate scheme to move chords to move rhythm to move structure to move harmony, a self-reinventing progression here scattered in the narrative fragments of an observer.


1. Kveldstimer
2. Langs Stier Uten Ende
3. Grålysning
4. Fra Kilden til Tjernet
5. Tårers Sang
6. Hatefulle Tanker ut i Natten
7. Ni Gygrer - Nattjakt
8. Bak to Lysende Øyne
9. Sønn av Skyggers Skygge
10. Fjellstev
Length: 37:41

sort vokter folkloric necro-metal
Copyright © 1997 Norse League

The dominance of rhythm and deliberate ultra-low-fidelity recording enhance the distance of this music from the listener, enabling it a position of disregard from which to work its magic, winding simple differences in tone through an elaborate rhythm to increase motion or express a dissonant, dispersive moribund emotion of emptiness and strategic sadness. Numerous low-complexity intros and keyboard compositions flood spaces in the listening experience with high-sustain bounty of sound, to which stampede drums and howling strumfeathered melody will engender a counterpoint. The complexity is hidden, but it like the beauty of this music remains a fragment of an idea seen in the abstract.

BLACK   |   DEATH   |   HEAVY   |   SPEED   |   THRASH   |   GRINDCORE