The proud declaration of Hoest’s 2009 (American release date) eponymous CD “Taake
” as true Norwegian black metal delivers as advertised with the old school template of heavy distortion, constant strumming cadences, screeching vocals, and diabolical hues of sonic noise. Also true to form is a very deliberate sense of underproduction with very little post recording work. To note, one of the best tracks, “Motpol” is an anomaly with female screaming and explosions mixed into the final cut. Considering that all of “Taake
” is the work of one man, the live feel of this album is actually quite impressive.
From a compositional standpoint, the main focus of keeping true to the genre doesn’t disappoint. Like punk, the main drive of true black metal is attitude, constant strumming sequences, and an aversion to complex writing and virtuoso playing. Indeed, the music weaves in and out of various degrees of heaviness while shifting speeds by way of sliding and climbing than straight change ups (“Lukt Til Helvete
”, “Doedsjarl”, and the opus “Velg Bort Livet”).
What Hoest does try to hide on “Taake
” is a sense of his evolved personal skills and abilities. The barely discernible bass line at the end of “Velg Bort Livet” under a constant barrage of double bass kicks and wild string striking is actually quite smart and very well placed. Most tracks reveal not one but two basic movements either defined by time or tempo. Finally, there are some guitar riffs that are almost too good not to highlight (“September Omsider” and the great “Umenneske”). No question, “Taake
” is true to its Norwegian black metal roots, but when it deviates from this very narrow field, it is no less authentic. In the end; however, “Taake
” is a great display of that classic sound and it is a very solid album.