KURGAN "Ascetic Dissociations" 12"LP
Kurgan debuted on the "Even Biology is Revolting" compilation with dark, circumspect pagan black metal that stood apart from other styles on the tape, focusing on swaying mid-paced hypnosis under vocals equal parts tormented and tormenting. This LP builds on a similar foundation but elaborates with a wider range of keyboard-accented melodies and deep flourishes that don't simply dwell in the abyss but build a latticework of organic matter within it, showing the abyss to be fully inhabitable for certain types of life. Kurgan has qualities that may appeal to fans of black metal's more morose and drooping branches, but self-destruction here is balanced by a condescending swagger and cutthroat confidence that moves with upright posture and melodic power unavailable to the boring minds of self-professed 'depressives' -- this music is whole and it corrects the incorrect while committing crimes of its own liking. The record can be appreciated for its atmosphere alone, a worthy echo drifting from one room into another, or it can be inspected more closely for underlying details that emerge from repeat listens. A distinct and long-awaited addition to the CW Productions catalog from a songwriter deserving of vinyl representation.