Gnaw Their Tongues - Collected Atrocities 2005-2008 - (8/10)
Published on January 21, 2015
Gnaw Their Tongues formed in 2005, and is the one man project of Maurice “Mories” de Jong. The one man project hails from Drachten, Friesland in the Netherlands, and has released a slew of full-lengths, EPs and a few splits. De Jong is also part of six other one man projects. To say he has a lot of material under his wing is an understatement. However, 2015 brings us a collection of early Tongues material appropriately titled, Collected Atrocities 2005-2008 released via Crucial Blast Records. This two disc, two hour plus offering shows us the early years of the band, and brings some previously unheard/unreleased material to the forefront. This compilation is dense and can be a challenge to get through, but it is ultimately rewarding, and the early Gnaw Their Tongues material proves to be truly haunting.
The music that this album and project delivers is more of a noise/drone sound with some occasional black metal influence, especially in the vocal department. The songs on Atrocities are incredibly heavy and noise driven. Long passages of industrial and jarring sounds, a few samples here and there, and some terrifying screams. There are some moments of underlying melody within the tracks, case in point being the final track of disc one, “Slaves” which features plenty of droning and headache inducing noise, but just enough melody to push the track to the next level. There are a few black metal tracks as well, which forgo more of the noise, in favor of “traditional” music and structure. Regardless of what style the project is sowing off though, each track is deep, and quite menacing. The droning tracks certainly feel more heart wrenching, and gut turning and are among the darkest stuff I’ve heard in ages. The black metal moments don’t quite have the same impact, but are still incredibly strong and well written songs.
The second disc of this collections features some of the better material, which is interesting as this compilation is not entirely in order. The first six tracks were released in 2008, while the latter part of the second disc was released in 2007, and the songs in-between also at different times. It can be hard to pinpoint exact eras or time frames where De Jong really developed this project, but regardless of when the tracks were released initially, they all show a man able to capture some truly dark moments and release them to the listener. Each track is worth listening to, and moving in its own way. The samples are appropriate as well to help push forward any themes of the tracks as the vocals are indecipherable, and the droning music does not exactly “progress” to tell any story.
Collected Atrocities 2005-2008 is not n easy listen. The material here is demanding. With over two hours of music, it can be hard to listen to this all in one go, but taken little by little, it helps these tracks become more powerful and memorable. Again, the second disc features some of the deeper material, but that does not discount some of the amazing moments from disc one. The longer tracks may loose some impact a bit, but this compilation is a great starting point for anyone interested in this project. Dark, haunting, and honestly terrifying, Gnaw Their Tongues is one of the more impressive bands of the noise/drone style.