V▲LH▲LL - STΞNDHΛL
The last we heard from V▲LH▲LL was back in October of 2015 when they released a semi-ambient dark electronic EP titled Vi††ΞЯS†ЯåK. Though it was only two tracks, those tracks were both over ten minutes long for a total run time of twenty-five minutes and nine seconds. So, short it may be it stil had enough meat on its bones to stand alone. Some time passed and I began to wonder when V▲LH▲LL would release their next piece of music. Lo and behold in the beginning of 2017 I was treated to the exciting release of V▲LH▲LL's latest EP STΞNDHΛL. While the information is scarce on the EP, I was treated to some lines from ancient text on V▲LH▲LL's Bandcamp page that reads:
WΞRΞ WΞ TO LΛY OVR ΞYΞS ON THΞ BΞΛVTY OF THIS KINGDOM IN ΛGΞS ΛΞONS LONG LOST WHΞN MΛGIC STILL GRΞW STRONG OVR WOVNDS WOVLD HΞΛL TVRN RVST TO STΞΞL IN ΛGΞS ΛΞONS LOST WHΞRΞ WΞ BΞLONG -The Esoteric Order Of Stendhal
Pushing my love for the mythos V▲LH▲LL has built aside, I continued on my venture and began listening to STΞNDHΛL. The first track 'ΛΞONS' begins off with a wicked synth line that would belong in any John Carpenter film or, for that matter, horror/sci-fi film from the eighties. Soon the hectic whispers of a long lost history kick in along with the deep, brooding synths V▲LH▲LL has stylized throughout their performances. Screams echo in the background and the witch house/gravewave ebbs pulse in. I fell in love with the neofolk vibes that the next track 'ORDΞR OF STΞNDHΛL' brought in. Not only that, but the vocals were perhaps the deepest and darkest I've heard from V▲LH▲LL thus far. The rumbling yet powerful vocals made me feel as if I was hearing a spirit of a long famed warrior speak unto me.
'SHRINΞ' brought out mystical chimes and sweeping synths that helped blacken out, though not entirely, goblin-esque screeches in the background. A slight ambient static also had a stay in the track filling up quiet moments with an essence of dread. The last track on the album 'MVRMVRS' went off the bend from the rest of the tracks and brought a dance-vibe to the track. The deep, distorted vocals were there though not as powerful or menacing as before. This did not make the track any less pleasing, but it did put it in a different territory than the rest of the EP.
STΞNDHΛL is another great addition to V▲LH▲LL's ever growing discography of spooky witch house music and folklore inspired tales. With each EP and album they release, the fantasy of V▲LH▲LL grows even more in my head and the scope of the world they imagine themselves in multiplies. Perhaps one day we will get a written passage of the world of V▲LH▲LL and all the things that it incorporates. But, for now, we are left to our own imagination to concoct these wickedly spun tales. Cheers to V▲LH▲LL for the new EP and for getting my imagination going!Jan 28 2017
I've been writing for Brutal Resonance since November of 2012 and now serve as the editor-in-chief. I love the dark electronic underground and usually have too much to listen to at once but I love it. I am also an editor at Aggressive Deprivation, a digital/physical magazine since March of 2016. I support the scene as much as I can from my humble laptop.
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