Glorior Belli – Gators Rumble, Chaos Unfurls

cover_2013_200I chose to move a thousand miles north a while back, but having spent most of my life in South, and with most of my roots stemming from there, I am still very much a Southerner, despite my affinity for cold climes, cold Great Lakes and even colder music. For that reason, Glorior Belli’s attempts at melding blues/swamp-metal with black metal – at varying degrees – has intrigued me. On Gators Rumble, Chaos Unfurls, the full embrace of their blues aesthetic begun in earnest on Meet Us At the Southern Sign (an album I enjoy) continues but now – aside from the J.’s well-know high-low gurgle, a blast now and again, and an infrequent double-bass run – this ‘Southern’ side of the band (by way of the outskirts of Paris, France) has pushed the blackened aspects of their sound to the corners. Surprisingly, I am unhappy with this. I’d have thought that more of the blues’ humid tonality, so familiar to me, would have been more welcome to my aging ears, but it actually isn’t. I realize now that, for me, GB’s blues inductions were highly appreciated and brazen major-chord breaks in the band’s black metal action, but the ample, converse presence of their tremolo notes and blast beats are what buttressed up the pentatonic scales. With only sporadic moments of ferocity (excepting the track ‘I Asked For Wine, He Gave Me Blood’ which mightily pummels all the way through), the sounds of the bayou Glorior Belli emulate have me thinking of bands that do this style full-time and to greater effect, and yet, I know that I am going to keep giving Gators Rumble, Chaos Unfurls a chance despite my initial reaction to it. For at the end of the day, Glorior Belli’s risks remain those that few (if any) other black metal bands have taken, and so I can’t easily disavow the record without spending a larger amount of time with it than my self-imposed deadline for this review allows.

And that’s where we are left. If you don’t mind a bit of rock with your black, you may, with time, be able to find something to appreciate within Glorior Belli’s latest. If the thought of such things sicken you, well, you already gave up on them five years ago anyway. -Jim

Agonia Records

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~ by cliftonium on September 18, 2013.

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