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THE METAL OBSERVER - Review - TODESSTOSS - Selbstentleibung-Der Annäherung Erster Teil

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Rating explanation

Todesstoss - Selbstentleibung-Der Annäherung Erster Teil (7/10) - Germany - 2007

Genre: Black Metal
Label: Ahdistuksen Aihio Productions
Playing time: 19:29
Band homepage: -


  1. Gedichtvortrag (Recitation)
  2. Instrumentallied (Instrumental)
Todesstoss - Selbstentleibung-Der Annäherung Erster Teil

This one saps the will, repetition taking its toll, one bloodied foot tentatively placing itself before the other ad nauseum. The sense of hopelessness amplified by the recurring three note motif, the lack of progress being the subject of derision from a mocking counter-melody.

“Selbstentleibung” is essentially one very long instrumental track preceded by a spoken word piece presented in a voice that hints at having either demons or bods in the head, not knowing the lingo I couldn't say whether it sets the scene for what follows but it does possess the quirk of its musical partner.

“Instrumentallied” has the same bleak vista as the oft parodied Eastern European cartoons, the pinch of surrealism is restricted by the jackboot of the percussion which has a munitions factory regimen about itself. The mainstay of this composition is an echoed sodium riff that flickers with stark dejection, prowling around this monolith of misery is a jeering mandolin synth tone that baits its wretched neighbour, though at times it becomes gripped by the morose itself. This theme prevails throughout and it is unflinching in its monotony, there are elements that act as waymarkers such as the plinking of single piano notes and there are increases in emphasis courtesy of increasing volume that gradually builds towards a crescendo.

Then it stops and whilst it still walks the weird, the track takes on a lighter aspect with the spectre of its former self occasionally springing out from doorways. This last quarter has a spookiness to it and evokes a puppet theatre tragedy, what with its silhouetted whisper of menace. Eventually what little life left fades out and you are left standing alone wondering what it all meant. The beauty of instrumentals is that they can mean anything you want them to, the composer may have their own ideas but even they can't dictate what picture should be painted in your head. “Selbstentleibung” may be drab but the simple interplay of guitar and martial drums with minimal embellishment does provide a black canvas upon which you can brush your own tones of grey, this isn't even just a case of black and white, just different shades of shadow.

The funereal nature of this music does benefit from the basic eccentricity that masks it with a sense of the surreal, it does become somewhat hypnotic which fortunately prevents listening to one long track from becoming a chore. This is one band that can use the term Black Metal art with conviction, prepare yourself for some furrowed brow.

(Online September 24, 2007)

Niall MacCartney

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