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Adoration Above Adversity: Numenorean Moves Mountains on “Adore”

adore

There’s beauty built right into personal devastation, ironically, but also hope. There’s also music which captures this high/low duality: sonic reverberations powerfully bleak enough to blank your overflowing emotional slate but laden with enough vibe and style to reinvigorate your soul. Indeed, this is where black metal and post-metal conjoin — the two’s nexus a terrain of tumult and terror where raw feelings are exposed to death’s infinite vacuum — to make something thematically bespoke but always seminally grounded. And this is where Canadian troupe Numenorean come in with their sophomore effort Adore, echoing off the corners of everything from shoegaze to dark ambiance to straight-up black metal but still honing one sharply cohesive story. Check out an exclusive stream of Adore‘s title track below (the penultimate track on the album).

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As the album’s longest and perhaps most emotive track, “Adore” showcases the rich texture and cinematic nuance that Numenorean have imbued into their sound, edging close to ballad territory but never overflowing from itself. Unafraid of sudden stylistic shifts throughout Adore‘s ten tracks, each one amounts to a genre-blending exercise in achieving the most etheric atmosphere possible. The band harnessed the dynamism of post-metal in the beginning of “Adore” to build complex tension, the midpoint to harness the movement with receding blackgaze and acoustic guitar, and the latter half to absolutely belt as if the world’s end was slated for tomorrow. Given that the album’s final track “DDHS” is a soft, short outro piece, “Adore” is arguably where Numenorean make their most grand denomount to date.

We spoke with guitarist/vocalist Roger LeBlanc about the new album and what it means for the band as this important stage in their career.

numenorean

What was the writing process like for Adore? Did you face any challenges as a band that you had to overcome; and was the three-year writing process arduous, or more sporadic?

More sporadic for sure. We went through so many waves of demos before settling on the sound we wanted. I think once we flooded ourselves with our initial ideas we were able to just jump in blindly and let our influences do the rest.

Is there a story or special meaning behind the cover artwork? How does this relate to the album’s narrative or message?

It depends on which member you ask. This album, cover included, means something different to each of us. We created a more personal album, which allowed for more individual interpretations. For me, it’s a second skin. The idea of becoming stronger through adversity. It’s a very empowering album for me and I think the cover art represents that.

Did the band utilise any new instrumental or production techniques that further progress the Numenorean sound? What changed this go-around?

Yes, the big one being us actually working in the room with our producer Josh Schroeder. He became a sixth band member and really helped shape the album as much as any of us. Also, being isolated in a foreign place allowed us to be very focused, for better or worse. I have a hard time imagining this album without that whole experience.

How do you approach atmosphere in your music – does it arise naturally from your instruments, so to speak, or do you feel like engineers sometimes (or maybe a mixture of both)?

For me, it always starts with the riff, or melody. You don’t need effects for atmospheric clichés, of course they are amazing to have, but It all starts with that simple gut feeling. Listen to a track like “Devil Got My Woman” by Skip James. Absolutely no effects or post-production, it’s just pure emotion and that leads to it being extremely atmospheric. You can just close your eyes and live in that moment, That’s extremely important because through the clouds of reverb the listener has to still be able to find your soul.

Are there any thoughts you’d leave readers for viewing the music video for the title track “Adore”?

Thank you for listening.

Adore releases April 12th via Season of Mist. Stream two more tracks from the album below.

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