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Cara Neir / Ramlord: (Split LP)

I always look forward to split releases because they usually introduce me to bands that I need to hear. Even better, the sampling is usually small enough to give me a taste of what these bands can do and leave me hoping for a longer release. With this release, I was more enthusiastic about Cara Neir than about Ramlord. Part of the problem is that Ramlord chose to feature their sound through one long track (clocking in at 10 minutes and one second). I liked the song well enough, but it didn't fit as well with Cara Neir's more eclectic sound. I think this release would have been better served with two shorter songs rather than one long one.

Cara Neir is a band out of Texas. They play music from a variety of influences (this is according to their promo materials), but consider black metal to lie at the core of everything they do. Give these guys a listen. I'd suggest checking out the way the drumming really draws out different beats and rhythms than the usual 4/4 time. I really felt like these guys were experimenting with each track. Be sure to listen to "Wilted Blue," though. The guitar part has a slightly funk-infused flavor that surprised me and left me wanting more. Musically, these guys seem really creative.

Ramlord, for me, was far less impressive, probably because they are much more concerned with developing their black metal chops than exploring new directions. They sound fine and the song works well enough, but it didn't have the surprise of Cara Neir's music. Maybe I shouldn't compare the two, but the split format cries out for comparison. According to their own promo materials, these guys are working hard to use their music to challenge human arrogance, greed, and ignorance. I agree that black metal can explore such themes effectively, but I wonder what would happen if they described this attempt less and let the music do even more of the work.

Track Listing:
1. Cara Neir--Family Dirge
2. Cara Neir--Cradled by Apathy
3. Cara Neir--Wilted Blue
4. Ramlord--Afflication of Clairvoyance (Part I)

Added: September 12th 2012
Reviewer: Carl Sederholm
Related Link: Bandcamp page
Hits: 1583
Language: english

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