Ecferus/Palace of Worms – “Ecferus / Palace of Worms” (Split Album Premiere)
Having both been in the spotlight in the past year due to their unique, fantastic works, bringing both Ecferus and Palace of Worms together is, in theory, a modern black metal dream. Luckily for us, the listeners, both bands prove said theory in practice, ushering in the new year with some of their most unusual, powerful material to date.
Palace of Worms open this split on a vicious note. Following the adventurous, challenging, untamed The Ladder, sole member Balan chooses to, again, eschew the notion of expectation in favor of expanding his musical horizons. Taking direction from the bludgeoning, low-end riffing of the classic Swedish death metal sound pioneered by Entombed and Dismember, these three new songs flex an unexpected brawn previously unattributed to Palace of Worms’s sound. Though rife with doomed chunk, d-beats, and slack-tuned muscle, this trio of songs still falls within Palace of Worms’s kaleidoscopic vision.
Fellow prolific solo artist Alp of Ecferus closes this split with his special brand of technically-minded, atmospheric black metal chaos. Finding a balanced medium between the lyrical expanse of his early works on the Prehistory album with the more academic discord of his recent split with Jute Gyte, Ecferus’s brackish vitriol answers Palace of Worms’s filth from the opposite end of the extreme metal spectrum. Oft-times resembling the vicious, post-Romantic grandeur of Emperor’s Wrath of the Tyrant, Ecferus’s shifting, blanket approach to black metal continues to wow.
The impending split release between underground USBM giants Palace of Worms and Ecferus will be handled by Crown and Throne Ltd (vinyl), which is slated for a January 31st release, with cassette to follow on Tartarus Records and an eventual CD release on I, Voidhanger Records. Scroll below for an exclusive first listen to this mammoth union of these unique up-and-coming artists.
From the artists:
After the undertaking that was making “The Ladder” I wanted to do something different to refresh myself musically. I chose to turn in an almost 180 direction aesthetically and instead of creating sounds that were the reflection of stained hands rising out of the murk toward a questionable future, I wanted to plumb the depths of the oily well of classic Death and Death/Doom sounds. The melodic aspects of most Palace of Worms material has been retained but presented in a much more brutish context. Making these songs was very therapeutic for me as I have always wanted to create a piece of music that would’ve excited me in the days when I was first discovering Heavy Metal. The themes of these 3 song reflect my life long interest in Fortean topics and Anomalous Phenomena in the natural world. For example the song “The Lost” is about unsolved disappearances in national parks and mysterious deaths that may have supernatural connections, in addition to concepts such as lost time, teleportation, and cryptozoology. I am very happy to be sharing this recording with one of the best metal solo projects in the world right now: Ecferus.
When I first made contact with Balan I could tell that we would see eye to eye creatively, and when I first heard his side of the split I was completely blown away. In my opinion it’s among his best work to date.
I started working on my side almost immediately after completing Pangaea – the CD hadn’t even come out yet. I was in the mood to create something a little more rough around the edges with less attention to detail since Pangaea was a more meticulous affair.
Conceptually it is a battle between the instinct and the intellectual, each seeing the other as an enemy needing cut out. The track “Unveiled With Spears” is about North Sentinel Island in the Andaman Islands of India. The people there resist all contact with modern civilization, hurling arrows and spears at anyone who dares to visit. They cling to the purity of their primitivism and defend it to the death. In our minds we search for the basis of humanity but the answers are confused and incomplete. The unconscious seeks a home for its catharsis, and the intellect lays claim to territory in the form of totality of the brain.