Plus une main à mordre
- Year 2017
- Genre Black MetalPost-MetalSludge
- Country France
- Label Debemur Morti Productions
- Rating Excellent
French black metal project Throane has returned a bit earlier than listeners may have been expecting, as it has been less than a year and a half since the ‘Derrière-nous, la lumière’ full length was released. Formed by photographer/designer Dehn Sora, Throane has encompassed a dark and haunting aesthetic that blurred the lines between black metal and sludge/post metal. On follow-up ‘Plus une main à mordre’ these elements have been expanded upon and refined, reaching even greater levels of tense and hypnotic atmosphere that plunge the listener into desolation and despair. It’s more of an incremental step forward rather than a radical shift in sound, but given how strong the compositions are that’s more than enough to make this an album worth diving into.
…it comes at you with the ferocity and bite that you’d expect from an album that weaves between black metal, sludge, and quite a few other metal related genres, but the softer melodies leave just as much of an impact and come off as genuinely unnerving…
For those that have heard ‘Derrière-nous, la lumière’, ‘Plus une main à mordre’ feels like a sequel in terms of its overall tone and the way the songs are structured. Similar to its predecessor, the six songs on this album move forward in a slower manner that lets the atmosphere expand slowly until the instrumentals have fully engulfed the listener. But this time around there are even more layers to discover and the climaxes reach greater heights, giving Throane an even bleaker and desolate feel. It’s not as claustrophobic as the latest Blut Aus Nord or some of the other black metal out there as quite a few moments allow the density and volume to subside and provide a sense of reflection and tranquility, albeit one that still keeps the listener on edge. This is one of the best elements of ‘Plus une main à mordre’, as it comes at you with the ferocity and bite that you’d expect from an album that weaves between black metal, sludge, and quite a few other metal related genres, but the softer melodies leave just as much of an impact and come off as genuinely unnerving. Admittedly the methodical nature of some of these tracks does result in some moments that blur together, leaving Throane’s latest the type of album best experienced as a whole rather than in bits in pieces.
One of the biggest changes between this album and the last one is the increased emphasis on the vocals. Previously Dehn Sora’s harsher screams and shrieks hovered just above the instrumentation, often blending into the soundscapes. There’s a greater degree of separation between the two on ‘Plus une main à mordre’, and with the screams now bursting out of your speakers with even more bite it helps to make the compositions come across as extremely jagged and abrasive. Throane’s vocals remind me a bit more of sludge than black metal, channeling the type of tortured pitches that genre does so well. For the majority of the album Dehn Sora handles all the vocal work himself, but on the title track he brings in some guests to contribute a wider range of clean and distorted pitches. It opens up the sound significantly, and this is an element I’d be interested in seeing the project experiment with further as it continues to move forward.
Throane’s latest takes all of the elements that made its debut a standout and pushes them to the next level, creating hypnotic layers that submerge the listener in a desolate and tense environment. It doesn’t deviate that far from the direction showcased previously, but the twists and turns are sure to keep you coming back for another journey through darkness. This does lead to the question of where Dehn Sora goes from here as he runs the risk of this sound becoming too familiar in another album or so, but that shouldn’t take away from the fact that Throane has been able to create such haunting material in such a short span of time.