This relatively new outfit from Norway released a venomous EP in 2015 by the title of “Swallow & Trap Them” melding black metal vitriol with post hardcore nihilism as the band releases a debut full length that appeared during the latter half of last year but only just found it’s to our review section which is a pity as the release contains some of the most aggressive and violent music you’ll ever hear.
The album opens with “Bekmöre”, which translates as pitch black, and immediately the harsh guitar sound strikes a fervent blackened chord as the pernicious vocals scream spittle laden violence and quite how the guy can maintain this level of animosity is beyond me. The track quickly evolves into blasting Armageddon but tempers the bedlam periodically with slower post hardcore riffing that leads succinctly into “These Rats We Deny”, which also appeared on the EP, with a very catchy riff nestled snugly within the chaotic drum style which works perfectly to exemplify the bands rancorous approach, as these tenets hint at influences such as Converge. The throat shredding vocals give way to a caustic riff break insertion, amplified by a lone desolate guitar hook that possesses a sharp glacial aura.
Albums are not just about the songs, they’re about atmosphere, song order and overall cohesion and this release has all of those including the disturbing cover art with its greyscale theological connotations tinged with a very light green aura; to my eyes anyway. That atmosphere sees the blackened credentials appear on “The Spiral” and despite the songs unhurried style the seething hostility ingrained into the track is tangible. There is an inherent chaotic structure within the music which is highly controlled allowing the pandemonium to develop irrepressibly before reining it all in with punctuated riffing hooks. “Guillotines” begins calmly before unleashing a corrosive but catchy riff and half blasted tempo that situates the track within black metal and hardcore due to its style as the track undergoes morphing changes fluidly and with crushing confidence. A track called “Beat Them To Death” does what it says, as the song’s lead off with acerbic vocals, which are possibly some of the most aggressive I’ve heard in a while, as the tone adopted becomes deeper and more deathly like.
The slow sequential build-up of “Apathetic” enables the song to gather momentum evolving smoothly with influxes of bass work before dropping the track jarringly into an eerie tormented section coupled to the vocal terror that eventually materialises after a few minutes of the songs duration. This scene of blackened metallic post hardcore bristles with a lot of vicious acts like All Pigs Must Die and Oathbreaker both of whom are good reference points for Sibiir’s style as “Erase & Adapt” unleashes a very metallic riff initially, as the tune gathers momentum allowing all the components to coalesce into a wrathful assault but leaving the initial riff as the main focus that leads into the album closer “Icycsd”. Quite possibly the most savage song of the album and also the fastest after its initial tempered start that surrenders to a post hardcore structure as you can feel the tension in the song escalating towards the obliterating finale leaving the listener well and truly mauled.
Albums within the sphere of blackened post hardcore can be an endurance and require full attention as the sonic violation that this album assaults the listener with is staggeringly murderous.
(8.5/10 Martin Harris)