Black Metal from Outer Space!
Vyre is a new and promising project, founded in 2011, and KG Cypher (vox), Hedrykk (guitar), Zyan (guitar), T. Maximilian (bass), Android (drums) and Doc Faruk (Synth-Sounds) decided to bring two unusual fields together: Black Metal and science-fiction. The offspring is their debut The Initial Frontier Pt.1, and whoever interested in hard sound out of the ordinary should listen into this!
A short intro and five songs, no one less than eight minutes long, awaits us on The Initial Frontier Pt. 1. It is a rather melodic and calm Black Metal, mixed up really well with synth sounds (a bit like this Nocte-Obducta-goes-Pink-Floyd-mash-up on their latest album Umbriel) and blues elements. It is a cold sound, very rich in ornaments, very complex and the sort of music you have to listen several times to fully get it.
So far away …
After the „Small Bang Theory“ – maybe an intro, maybe just the last screams of a dying star, but whatever it may be, it is from outer space – Vyre take off with the title track “The initial Frontier”. These nine minutes are like a tapestry woven of pure sound: hard riffs and blastbeat mix up with synthies and very melodic parts, a mixture that shows: We are on our way through space, and it is beautiful, divine but also dangerous and freezing cold. Especially towards the end, when the choir starts, I am reminded distantly of Dimmu Borgir, but that is not a prominent feeling. The “Frontiers” as a theme is very common in science-fiction literature, and the next song, “Fragile Equilibrium”, surely takes us to the borders of the genre: the first two minutes everything sounds just like you expect it to, then a jazzy piano starts, a lonely guitar dreams in blues-riffs, all just for one minute, before it’s back to business as usual. Very strange indeed, the things you encounter in Vyre’s universe!
What do digital sheep dream of?
“Coil of Pipes” starts calm before furious drums kick in and speed things up a bit. The title is great, associations to biomechanical cables, steaming pipes, crawling over dark floors and something’s going terribly wrong – space opera at its best. In the end, there still are stars to look upon, and timeless, very clear guitars showing that, until all the instruments slowly fading out, leaving a solemn piano that echoes in the infinity of space, until we are alone again – and pick up a transmission: “Digital Dreams” we dream now, and instantly my brain shows me images from the novels and stories of Philip K. Dick. Maybe William Gibson had a hand in this, too, because the digital dreams turn out to be landscapes in 8-bit, complete with black flowers and square bees, soulless in their artificiality. Nothing can get out of this unreal, virtual world, it seems.
The last song, “Miasma”, does not sound more positive either, but tells us, alternating between German and English, of total annihilation through a plague, a bad, poisonous stench, biting nebula you cannot breathe – pure miasma. And that is where The Initial Frontiers Pt. 1 comes to a desolating end.
Music like a sunrise on a distant planet
Forming an opinion about The Initial Frontier Pt. 1 is not easy. It is definitely not a bad album Vyre delivered, but a bit too full of details that are craving for your attention and that are too often left unheard due to not loose yourself in them. Somewhat simpler songs, technically speaking, may have been a better idea at that point – and that sounds, by the way, more like something I would say about a SF-novel than a Black Metal album.
On the other hand: It is exactly this eye for details that really make Vyre stand out from the other bands in the vast field of experimental Black Metal. Composition, the lyrics, the way the sythnies are used – all in all, The Initial Frontiers Pt. 1 leaves not much to complain about, and I really enjoyed every minute I listened to this great debut. Especially how the synth-sounds contradict the guitars and still everything suspends in harmony in the end is fantastic and creates a unique sound that never gets boring – just the ideal music for a long journey through outer space!
I am looking forward to The Initial Frontier Part 2 that will soon be released via Supreme Chaos Records. Can hardly wait to see where the journey will lead us to!
1. Small Bang Theory (introduction)
2. The Initial Frontier
3. Fragile Equilibrium
4. Coil of Pipes
5. Digital Dreams
Total running time: 48:54 min