Aube Grise

Album Title: 
L'Encre Et La Terre
Release Date: 
Thursday, June 15, 2017
Review Type: 

I will be very short on this one, for this new Aube Grise release soon follows the Hanterieur recording, and in a very near future I will come back to the Shale / Arrache-Moi ep. But until then, this CDr…

L’Encre Et La Terre (‘the ink and the Earth’ – and I think ‘ink’ is a righteous translation, seen the artwork) is like a lengthy continuation of Anna M.’s inspiration, once started with some more introspective sonic expressions via Distant Voice, a unique French label of which Anna is part of as photographer and graphic designer. Together, once again, with label owner Thomas Bel, she created another composition, this time entitled L’Encre Et La Terre, which is like a one-piece experience, clocking almost twenty-seven minutes. Like most stuff from this label, but this time I won’t go too deep into the matter, it is a hugely limited edition, handmade, without any possibility to be repressed, done in an edition of 48 copies. A shame, a blessing, whatever…

One single lengthy composition, yet it is divided into several (organically cohesive, notwithstanding the sore production) chapters. L’Encre Et La Terre starts with a sad, melancholic, depressing piano introduction, before transforming into a dense, obscure and haunting chapter with both those piano melodies and grim, raw droning synths. The piano play suddenly changes into an experimental thing for a little while, and at about 4:30 the coldness of Black Metal takes over the game. It’s so typifying, this raw execution, for both the label as well as the project. Truly rough, unpolished yet melodious riffs, and harsh and somewhat minimalistic performed rhythms (with those mechanical drum sound), penetrate the listener’s brain, and then that throat… The screams are so tortured, wretched and icy, spawning poisonous mucus and acid. More than before, the injection of field recordings sort of dominates certain intermezzos, as additional chapters being part of the whole creation. The same goes for acoustic and semi-acoustic pieces, like the mighty bass / guitar part at about ten / twelve minutes (a very fine intermezzo with some more field recordings and, finally, bells as well, as an introduction for another blackened outburst with harsh drum salvos). And that’s like a permanently evolving continuation, a returning certainty for this album: different constructions that make one huge creation of deep-dark and emotive excellence. Violent Black Metal, depressed Classical Music à la Arvo Pärt, dreamy Field Recordings and sounds of nature, and doomed, droning Ambient are fused into one magisterial sonic experiment / experience, possibly resulting in the best album by Aube Grise yet…

As usual, the production is extremely rough and harsh. This is Underground with capital ‘U’, this is like returning to the essence. You like it or you do not – that’s your decision to make – but undersigned does not dislike, despite the ‘synthetic’ sound and machinal drum patterns.