Lugubrum - De Ware Hond
Old Grey Hair
Avant-Garde Black Metal, Jazz
4 songs (45:40)
Release year: 2007
Lugubrum, Old Grey Hair
Reviewed by Goat
Archive review

Lugubrum is one of those rarities in the musical world that truly defy description. Calling its style ‘Boersk Blek Metle’, the band is at the furthest left of the Black Metal leftfield, mixing Jazz and Neofolk influences to create a unique sound. Hailing from Belgium, the band is made up of skilful musicians, recording all music live in the studio without overdubs, and arranging this album as two ‘sides’ of two lengthy songs each, which doesn’t exactly lend itself to casual listens, but it’s when you give De Ware Hond time that it shines brightest.

Once you’ve gotten over the oddly disturbing gnome scratching its head on the front cover (painted by guitarist Midgaars) you’ll discover that even from the first listen there’s something hypnotic about De Ware Hond. The four tracks aren’t so much songs as journeys, taking you through the foggy forest on the back cover in a psychedelic, Jazzy route that is more about the overall ambient atmosphere created than a showcase of technical skill, although there’s plenty of that.

There’s a wide range of music here, from the extremely twisted Thrash of Movement II: The Dog In The Doorway, more Sigh than Sodom, to the avant-garde saxophone-driven meanderings of Movement III: Neerwartse Hond. Vocalist Barditus snarls and gasps his way throughout seemingly non-stop, and although it would work as instrumental music the vocals do add something extra by giving the listener a focus point for the music to swirl around. And with the two guitarists playing down different audio channels, it swirls indeed, making the music envelope you. The latter half of the album was recorded on analogue equipment, giving it that extra aural warmth as you get deeper into the forest, the creepy percussion an extra element of aural madness.

Clearly, you’re either going to like this or you aren’t, but this will appeal to more people than might at first be apparent. As well as the obvious Jazzy Black Metal fans, as many as there aren’t, there’s more than enough atmosphere on offer to ensnare even the more traditional Black Metal fans for the ride of their life, and even, say, Sun Ra devotees shouldn’t be surprised to find themselves entranced. De Ware Hond is a near-perfect fusion of the best bits of Jazz and Black Metal, with just enough catchiness to keep you listening. The aural equivalent of dropping a tab of acid, Lugubrum is the type of experience everyone should try at least once – just make sure your mind comes back with you.

Killing Songs :
All!
Goat quoted 90 / 100
Other albums by Lugubrum that we have reviewed:
Lugubrum - Heilige Dwazen reviewed by Goat and quoted 90 / 100
Lugubrum - Albino De Congo reviewed by Goat and quoted 85 / 100
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