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L'Acéphale

by L'ACEPHALE

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XuL//Excelsi
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XuL//Excelsi Op die eerste luister deur het ek teen Runenberg al L’Acéphale op fisiese formaat bestel, met die wete dat die res van die album die soort katarsis sal lewer wat my permanent veranderd sal laat. Ek was nie teleurgesteld nie.

Eens-in-‘n-dekade, trane-in-die-oë, kopverloor black metal waarvoor die allerhoogste rakke nog gebou moet word. --L.D Favorite track: Runenberg.
zhmcd
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zhmcd Probably my favorite metal track in years. Reminds me of when I first heard Enslaved - Below The Lights, with electronic squeals and trills walking in the background of an utter banger. Anything based on Bataille is a positive, also. Beautiful vinyl package. Favorite track: Runenberg.
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1.
Sovereignty ……………. Dieu – (God) Lyrics: Georges Bataille Translation: Leslie Anne Boldt Vocals: Geneviève Beaulieu A la main chaude je meurs, tu meurs où est-il où suis-je sans rire je suis mort mort et mort dans la nuit d'encre flèche tirée sur lui. …………. With warm hands I die, you die where is he where am I without laughter I am dead dead and dead in the pitch-black night arrow shot at him. ………. Die Sonne stirbt – (The Sun Dies) Lyrics: Bruno Goetz Translation: Markus Wolff Vocals: Markus Wolff Trüber Glast auf Feld und Teich Sonne stirbt im Schattenreich. Weg ist fern und Luft ist leer, Keine Stimme schwingt sich her. Wald verfault in Moor und Schlamm, Ranken drosseln Stamm um Stamm. Weißer Nebel qualmt und loht Mondball hebt sich nah und rot. Flut wird Eis und grad wird krumm Blut wird Blei und Wort wird stumm. Nichts ist unser, nichts ist warm Vögel fliehen Schwarm um Schwarm. Mondwärts steigt ihr steiler Zug, Kreischend zuckt und stockt ihr Flug. Flattersturz in Sumpf und Gruft, Füße krallen in die Luft. Weg ist fern und Luft ist leer, Keine Stimme schwingt sich her. ............ A dull bleak glare envelopes field and pond The sun dies in the shadow realm. The way is far and the air is silent, Not a single voice is heard. Forest decays into swamp and mud, Vines choke trunk after trunk. White fog billows and blazes The lunar sphere rises, a red, looming disc. Flood turns to ice and straight to crooked Blood turns to lead and the word falls silent. Nothing is ours, nothing is warm Birds flee, swarm after swarm. Towards the moon, their steep course ascends, Their screeching flight erratic and convulsive. Flapping wings crash into bog and grave, Feet clawing at the air. .................... Sovereignty Lyrics: Laure (Colette Peignot) Translation: Jeanine Herman Vocals: Set Sothis Nox La Drive your cart And plow over the bones of the dead Our “Hell” will cover the universe The sky's fire, fragments of earth Boiling lava Precious gems will strike your heart In sonorous chaos, absurd and brilliant Unbreathable void revealed To be everything Falling into this void A filthy parody of the torrid and blinding sun Life screams from my throat You are the night The intoxicating absolute Hurls forth the depths of my being Like a volcano’s eruption A meteor’s fall Life is the flow of blood Weighed with death Sealed by death Offer yourself to death Sovereignty requires relentless austerity ....................
2.
Gloria in Excelsis Mihi Lyrics: Georges Bataille Translation: Leslie Anne Boldt Vocals: Geneviève Beaulieu Au plus haut des cieux, les anges, j'entends leur voix, me glorifient. Je suis, sous le soleil, fourmi errante, petite et noire, une pierre roulée m'atteint, m'écrase, morte, dans le ciel le soleil fait rage, il aveugle, je crie: “il n'osera pas” il ose. Qui suis-je pas “moi” non non mais le désert la nuit l'immensité que je suis qu'est-ce désert immensité nuit bête vite néant sans retour et sans rien avoir su Mort réponse. éponge ruisselante de songe solaire enfonce-moi que je ne sache plus que ces larmes. Étoile je la suis ô mort étoile de tonnere folle cloche de ma mort. Poèmes pas courageux mais douceur oreille de délice une voix de brebis hurle au delà va au delà torche éteinte. ……….. At the height of the heavens, the angels, whose voice I hear, glorify me. I am, beneath the sun, a wandering ant, small and black, a rolling stone reaches me, crushes me, dead, in the sky the sun blazes furiously, it blinds, I cry out: “it will not dare” it dares. who am I, not “me” no no but the desert the night the immensity which I am What are desert immensity night animal soon irrevocable Nothingness and without having known anything Death Answer sponge streaming with solar dreams enter me so that I no longer know but these tears. Star which I am O death thunderous star mad bell of my death. A lamb's voice is howling beyond go beyond Torch extinguished ...............
3.
09:44
Runenberg Lyrics: Ludwig Tieck Adapted by: S.S.N.L Translation: Ronald Taylor Vocals: Set Sothis & Liz Abyss Where are the spirits of old That hide in mountain glade? The rock laments in the shade Of gorges damp and cold Rivulets tumble down And break upon the stones Glittering like a crown With gemstones red and brown The traveler hears their call And sees the waters fall Come, Ye spirits bold In glory as of old And gather from the deep Those who lie in sleep Command the hearts and minds of all Who crave the solace of your glance And through your mystic will enhance The joy of those who heed your call… Runenberg What lies at the heart of man… Runenberg Sun sinking in the west Dusk stole over ground Disconsolate and deep in thought Stars beckoning thither A dark swelling sea The call of Runenberg …Runenberg… ..................
4.
Hark! The Battle-Cry Is Ringing! Lyrics by Henry Stephens Salt Vocals: Set Sothis Nox La & Meriel Elster Hark! The battle-cry is ringing! Hope within our bosoms springing, Bids us journey forward, singing — Death to tyrants' might! Tho' we wield not spear nor sabre, We the sturdy sons of Labor, Helping every man his neighbor, Shirk not from the fight! See our homes before us; Wives and babes implore us; So firm we stand in heart and hand, And swell the dauntless. Men of Labor, young or hoary, Would ye win a name in story? Strike for home, for life, for glory! Justice, Freedom, Right!
5.
06:30
Last Will - Letzter Wille Lyrics: Georges Bataille Adapted by: S.S.N.L. Translation: Bruce Boone Vocals: Set Sothis Nox La Drinking heavily from sky’s thunder Heart shattered by lightning Stars fall from the sky… I lapped up the lightning Burst into laughter Heart bursting with lightning Drinking heavily from sky’s thunder Stars fall from the sky… ……………………… Lyrics: Friedrich Wilhelm Nietzsche Translation: R. J. Hollingdale) Vocals: Markus Wolff & Ilana Hamilton So sterben, wie ich ihn einst sterben sah, den Freund, der Blitze und Blicke göttlich in meine dunkle Jugend warf: mutwillig und tief, in der Schlacht ein Tänzer, unter Kriegern der Heiterste, unter Siegern der Schwerste, auf seinem Schicksal ein Schicksal stehend, hart, nachdenklich, vordenklich: erzitternd darob, daß er siegte, jauchzend darüber, daß er sterbend siegte: befehlend, indem er starb, und er befahl, daß man vernichte... So sterben, wie ich ihn einst sterben sah: siegend, vernichtend... ………………. So to die, As once I saw him die, The friend who like a God Cast glances of lightning into my dark youth: Wanton, profound, In the slaughter a dancer, Of fighters the cheerfullest, Of victors the sternest, A destiny standing upon his destiny, Firm, reflecting, preflecting: Trembling with joy of victory, Rejoicing that he died in victory: By dying, commanding, and he commanded destruction… So to die, As once I saw him die: Victorious, destroying… ....................
6.
08:25
Sleep Lyrics: Georges Bataille Adapted and expanded by: S.S.N.L. Translation: Mark Spitzer Vocals: Set Sothis Nox La Numb Mumbling in ineptitude And decrepit chatter This icy fog of man Demand and death Villainess inane Detain… disdain the malignant Sleep… Sleep… Malign I climb up from the sea Sleep claws at my corpse The grave’s horse-teeth Chatter… Death chatter Wheeze…. Sleep Surging tide Arise… Arise… Sorcerer’s apprentice With burning heart Dagger in hand Strike this heart of man! Arise… ...................
7.
19:15
Winternacht Lyrics: Georg Trakl Adapted by S.S.N.L, Liz Abyss, and Markus Wolff) Translation: Alexander Stillmark & Markus Wolff Vocals: Set Sothis, Liz Abyss, & Markus Wolff Black skies of metal, Crimson storms at dusk, O die Finsternis! (O the darkness!) Black frost. Bitter air. The snows have fallen, Drunk with purple wine, Leave the dark abode, The stars align. Hard earth. Bitter air. Stars align in evil signs. A red wolf which an angel is strangling, The ravens adrift and starving, God’s vultures tear into your metal heart. Winternacht! God’s vultures tear into your metal heart. Winternacht! Winternacht! Schwarz ist der Schlaf. (Sleep is black.) Hunger maddened crows. Black is sleep. Black is sleep. Hunger maddened crows, Und Vor Satans Flüchen drehen… (And to Satan’s curses they…) Das Ohr folgt Klängen den Pfaden der Sterne im Eis. (The ear long follows the traces of the stars in the ice.) ………………………… Schwarze Himmel von Metall. (Black metal skies.) Kreuz in roten Stürmen wehen (At dusk, hunger crazed crows) Abends hungertolle Krähen (Are blown across crimson storm) Über Äckern gram und fahl. (Above fields sorrowful and fallow.) Im Gewölk erfriert ein Strahl; (In the clouds, a sunbeam freezes;) Und vor Satans Flüchen drehen (And because of Satan’s curses) Jene sich im Kreis und gehen (They all turn around and circle) Nieder siebenfach an Zahl. (Descending sevenfold in number.) [from Winterdämmerung (Winter Twilight) Translation by Markus Wolff] ………………………… Und ein Aas, das sie irgendwo wittern, (And they capture the scent of some carrion,) Nach Norden richten sie den Flug (Towards the north they direct their flight) Und schwinden wie ein Leichenzug (And vanish like a funeral procession) In Lüften die vor Wollust zittern. (Into skies that quiver / tremble with lust.) [from Die Raben (The Ravens), Translation by Markus Wolff] ………………………… Bitter the snow and moon, Far into the ice the ear shadows the path of stars. In clouds a beam is deathly frozen. Frozen! Ravens starved adrift, Im Gewölk erfriert ein Strahl. (In the clouds, a sunbeam freezes.) The stars align in evil signs. ………………………… Eis ist Schnee gefallen. (Snow has fallen.) Nacht Mitternacht verläßt du betrunken von pupurnem Wein, (After midnight, drunk with purple wine,) Den dunklen Bezirk der Menschen, (You leave the dark abode of humans,) Die rote Flamme ihres Herdes. (The red flame of their hearth.) Schwarzer Frost. (Black frost.) Die Erde ist hart, (The earth is hard,) Nach Bitterem schmeckt die Luft. (The Air bitter to the taste.) Deine Sterne schließen sich zu bösen Zeichen. (Your stars are joined into evil signs.) Beine klirren schreitend wie blaues Eis. (Striding on, your legs ring out like blue ice.) Ein roter Wolf, den ein Engel würgt. (A red wolf strangled by an angel.) Frost und Rauch. (Frost and smoke.) Ein weißes Sternenhemd verbrennt die tragenden Schultern (A white shirt made of stars scorches the burdened shoulders) und Gottes Geier zerfleischen dein metallenes Herz. (and God’s vultures tear apart your metallic heart.) Das Ohr folgt lange den Pfaden der Sterne im Eis. (The ear long follows the traces of the stars in the ice.) Schwarz ist der Schlaf. (Sleep is black.) Schwarz ist der Schlaf. (Sleep is black.) Schwarz ist der Schlaf. (Sleep is black.) Schwarz… (Black…) [from Winternacht (Winter Night), Translation by Alexander Stillmark] ………………………… Upon awakening, Toll the village bells, Through the eastern gate, Crepuscule silver. Bitter air. Stars align in evil signs. …………………………

about

Keeping within the spirit of the headless cult, the always evolving and self-defining project of Set Sothis Nox La now sets out to unleash their new and self-titled album; ten years after their last full length.

The tracks on this titanous, 74-minute magnum opus offer a varied, yet focused, listen with copious tension. While staying committed to their extreme metal roots and historical, literary themes, L'Acéphale incorporates and shines brightly with elements of monumental dark folk, spoken word, black metal, and almost martial artforms.

On seven epic-length tracks, spiraling with monolithic auras and blasting with furious whirlwinds, L'Acéphale appears at once aloof, yet savage with wild abandon, while at times delicate, but still unbreakable.L' Acéphale is as avant-garde as you can get, while raging with blistering and cacophonous ferocity.


'A arthouse with plenty of war going on' - Ave Noctum

'It's safe to say that "L'Acéphale" is one of the best records to come out of the United States in a long time ... a work that defies standards, breaks barriers and sets new grounds reliably and credentially. Memorable!'- Ultraje 9/10

'the track "Hark! The Battle-Cry is Ringing” is a pagan metal take on Dead Can Dance’s mysticism.'- Invisible Oranges

'The record is a sprawling multifaceted thing that gets better each listen, with mumbling incantations and screeches in at least three languages, and a wide range of elements and experiments from across the cutting knife edge of black metal. You’ll be wandering around in search of your own head by the end of it.' - Echoes and Dust

'once we were made aware that the band was getting ready to become more active, we saw the perfect opportunity to satiate our hunger for more L’Acéphale. With the announcement of their self titled,74-minute album coming this April on Eisenwald, what better time to explore the abyss than now?' - Roadburn / José Carlos Santos

'A psychedelic vision of ancient sounds and philosophical brooding, L’Acéphale‘s eponymous third full-length album closes a decade-long period of experimenting, adventure and true self-rediscovery.' - Decibel Magazine

'They give a great punch to a refreshing album, different and evolutionary, they have been brave.' - Metalbrothers

'Overall, the band walks a fine line between out-there experimentation and mainstream accessibility.' - Metal Temple

"...a 74 minutes transfixing adventure of neo-folk, avant-garde, and ritualist black metal." Blessed Altar Zine 9.5/10 (www.blessedaltarzine.com)

credits

released April 19, 2019

Recorded over the course of six years at various locations, with
primary recording and final mixing taking place at Gabriel Espinoza’s
studio, the Hellhole.

Mastered by Gus Elg at Sky Onion in Portland, Oregon.
www.skyonion.com
Illustrations by Markus Wolff (Neurosis, Tribes of Neurot, Agalloch, Antlers) and layout design by John Haughm (Pillorian, ex-Agalloch).
With fine band photography captured by Veleda Thorsson, www.veledathorssonphotography.com.

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L'ACEPHALE Portland, Oregon

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