Mort aux Gueux – Métal de Damnés

Well damn that was fun! Mort aux Gueux is a great one-man band from the land of Quebec, and I’d like to say that he’s a friend of mine as well. I found him through those inexplicable lanes of familiarity and recommendations from other bands and damn was it a good recommendation. The first album of his “Vaurien” was a trashy mix of Leviathan, Burzum, and Forteresse. His latest demo, “Métal de Damnés” is a great extension of the album as well as a progression in sound and quality. I have to say I think I like this album more than Vaurien and I loved Vaurien. It’s raw and thrashy and wild in the same way his countrymen’s Métal Noir Quebecois is and it’s full of ambience and feedback like Leviathan and primitive like Burzum. I think this album, even though it’s really just a demo, hits on exactly what Mort aux Gueux is, it’s the seminal album that could define Mort aux Gueux’s career. It’s only three songs but damn those three songs are some of the best I’ve heard, the best I’ve heard from Mort aux Gueux, he has found a niche, his sound and he is running with it, so to speak. The demo, named for the type of metal he sees Mort aux Gueux, is an extension of Vaurien but has much rawer production to it, almost as if it was recorded live (which with a one-man band is rather improbable). Normally I don’t like that sound, but something was different about the sound coming from this demo, it has the rough quality of a live recording but has the precision and musical integrity of a true studio album. I really can’t say enough good things about this album, it may have been intended to be a song dump, getting rid of the songs before moving onto the new album (tentatively coming out within the next year or so) but the strength behind the songs, the musical acumen, and the type of production, gives a great dimension to Mort aux Gueux’s catalogue. As per the other Mort aux Gueux releases the guitars are the most recognizable on the album, clearly his instrument of choice, with the drums, bass, and vocals providing a foundation and background for his expertise. The drums are solid, they’re fast and intricate but the production and the feedback cover up a lot of the intricacies that the drums provide on black metal albums. The vocals, too, are quieter and more sparsely placed within the songs than most black metal, giving Métal de Damnés a sort of depressive black metal vibe. I quite like it, especially since it’s a lot faster than a lot of black metal as well. I think the level of production will go up with the upcoming album, I can’t say why really but it’s a feeling nonetheless. The talent and the vision is there with Mort aux Gueux as is the drive to create something that transcends what we might call black metal art. Métal de Damnés is a great indicator of things to come and that alone makes it worth listening to.



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