Origin: Uppsala, Uppsala, Sweden 🇸🇪
Genre: Occult Black Metal
From out of Sweden: home to the international black metal circuit’s most occult-driven scene come Mephorash. It has been this way since the early mischief of one Jon Nödtveidt (Dissection) and his ascension within the ranks of the nefarious MLO, now known as Temple of the Black Light. But since his passing, esoteric black metal in Sweden and now Greece, has become something different than what it resembled in the 90’s. Brilliant minds like renowned occultist Thomas Karlsson and forward-thinking artists like Michayah Belfagor (Ofermod) have been of profound influence on these particular schools of BM. It’s through the understanding of Qliphoth and as the result of each individual’s daring stream into what’s known as Draconian Current, that new pathways of knowledge have become illuminated. Satan: The Dragon and ageless Faustian Spirit and Lucifer: The Guiding Light. A guiding light to navigate us through Satanic darkness. The Tree of Life, the Tree of Death and the functionality of creation as it exists made up of opposing forces. Heavy subject matter to say the least, but translated into black metal with ease by artists/experienced practitioners like Michayah, Yiannis K. (Serpent Noir) and Semjaza (Thy Darkened Shade).
Mephorash emerged from the Satanic darkness onto the scene in 2010, and wasted little time getting down to the business at hand. Back to back LP’s in 2011’s “Death Awakens” and 2012’s “Chalice of Thagirion” to illuminate their path towards gnosis. They’ve since followed up their debut and sophomore efforts with a split, a couple of EP’s and a pair of LP’s. Their most recent of the two full-lengths comes by way of the well-received “Shem Ha Mephorash” (2019) – an album that set a seemingly unreachable bar for a follow-up. But here we are four years later with civilization as we know it collapsing all around us and with no better coven to help us transcend this precursor to Armageddon than Mephorash. On November 10, Mephorash will release “Krystl-Ah” via Shadow Records / Regain Records.
Nothing can really prepare you for an album like “Krystl-Ah”. These types of recordings are the product of great spiritual exploration, so there’s no telling which sort of environment you’ll be pulled into, whether it be the dreamlike and soulful atmosphere of “Gnosis” or the nature-inspired “Soma Yoni”. And everything in between? A feast to be had: epic, unpredictable and as complex as Lucifer himself. But set off by intense cinematic vocals as the sound of babies cooing and of women writhing in carnal ecstasy permeate the atmosphere. With all the anticipation of a thrilling work of cinema, you’ll eagerly fall victim to each grandiosity and every transcendent moment as you find yourself in an almost trancelike state due to a great lulling into submission by tracks like “I Am” and the larger-than-life closer, “Mephoriam”. As the water flows and as ritual’s candles burn to stumps, we’re helpless now; caught within what feels like a great epiphany. Completely ambient are the opening few minutes of the closing track – a meditative piece that with its hypnotic soundscapes and somber clean vocals almost makes this part of the review difficult for me to write. You just want to let go and allow for the full experience to take you. And for you it shall. Following these contemplative moments, Mephorash flash the sacrificial dagger and cap off the record with bold forays into the most epic musical environments imaginable. Transcendental black metal to whip the spirit into a fiery froth and to rekindle imagination’s blaze. An awakening! A transformation…
The one thing that all of the above-mentioned artists have in common is originality. Esoteric black metal cannot follow trends nor can it produce the crusty throwbacks that everyone is salivating over these days. It has always been and always will be a matter of guesswork when it comes to deciphering these spiritual volumes. Some of this stuff is very difficult to cover and even more difficult to understand, but therein lies the beauty of it all. Musically and spiritually above my pay grade, but fascination will not be denied. A rare look into the world of the occult as projected into focus by a full lineup of true believers is what Mephorash are bringing to the threshold with “Krystl-Ah”. And you may never listen to black metal the same way again…
Experience “I Am” from “Krystl-Ah” right here as presented by Black Metal Promotion: