Without a doubt in my mind, Bless Them That Curse You is one of those releases that without hearing a single note of music, people will immediately become excited by the prospects of just such a pairing (hell, I know I did when both groups of musicians began posting pictures of recording sessions and pictures of pieces of paper outlining musical patterns on their respective places of informational dissemination); and the announcement that Locrian and Mamiffer would be releasing a mammoth collaborative album more than likely caused people’s heads to metaphorically explode while simultaneously causing a select few sickos to wet themselves, and I would be lying if I said that the idea of these two outfits doing even a single song together was not at least a little bit titillating.
From the moment that I first hear the opening drones of “In Fulminic Blaze” and the chanting vocals that accompany those, I thought that what I was hearing was the best thing to hit these jaded ears in a while; and when the piano and acoustic guitars ushered in a completely new experience almost as if the people involved in the recording were on some next level, that belief was shaken and then shaken again once the song built into its crashing crescendo (all in just the first track). As Bless Them That Curse You continues on its path, the distinct realization that Locrian and Mamiffer have created a fully realized album (even more amazing the amount of improvisation seems to place all involved in the album’s creation at the top of their collective powers and in touch with each other’s’ creative abilities in some crazy ways) as each composition brings familiar sounds from both parties into a seamless melding that just sounds almost perfect that climax in the massive “Metis / Amaranthine / The Emperor”, which I swear could crush people’s souls with its sheer power; and when the album finishes, I feel spent and drained as if some part of my own psyche became caught up in the whirlwind of furious energy (seriously, from the soft piano and voice of Faith Coloccia straight through to the manic middle movement with Terrence Hannum’s vocal contributions and going out with the crushing climax with Aaron Turner’s familiar bellow, this track alone is worth the price of admission).
Bless Them That Curse You delivers on every possible promise that pairing these two powerful outfits could conjure in your head when thinking about just what putting Locrian and Mamiffer in a room and seeing what they could come up with given the time and resources might just sound like, and luckily for us, we can all go along for the ride again and again; the pianos sound awesome next to the drones (check out “Lechatelierite” for a fine example), and the ambient sounds tie everything together perfectly throughout the album. Locrian and Mamiffer definitely have created an album that you must hear and experience because it certainly is exactly what you might think it would sound and look like and so much more right down to the stark and crisp visuals of the artwork and layout.
8.9 / 10
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