Wednesday, September 12, 2007

La Division Mentale - L'Extase Des Fous (2007)

With Deathspell Omega, Peste Noire and Blut Aus Nord all dropping full lengths, 2007 is quickly become the year for French black metal. Not content to let their more well known comrades hold all the limelight, we now have La Division Mentale adding L'Extase Des Fous to the fray. Loathe as I am to drop into journalistic simile mode, there really is no better method by which to describe this album. Imagine if you will, Sigh and Aborym collaborating on a Dødheimsgard covers album. Not only this, but they've decided to record it in a mental institute, with demonically possessed French children as a backing choir and Satan's Gameboy as a drum machine.

With intro, outro and inbetween utilizing the "sonic warfare" approach akin to Gallows Gallery, you may be asking yourself "Can I play with Madness?" The answer of course is no, because he'll strap you to a table made of dried feces, masturbate into your ear canal and pour fire ants in your urethra. This is off the deep end, utterly disturbing industrial black metal. You have been warned.

From the moment 'La Gale de Mon Passe' spews forth you're aurally assaulted with a sonic tidal wave of distorted guitars, demonic, barking vocals and a relentless drum barrage. Before there's time to recover in slips one of few recognizably orthodox riffs on the entire album and then we're off to lala land again. A tumultuous tornado of dischordant riffage carries 'Satan Inside', backed by an eery Mario coin capture sound, where the coins in question could be Mannoroth's testicles. Celestial dispersions of clean male, female and childlike vocals in native French drift through the album, like spirits of the dead trapped within the compositions. In essence, L'Extase Des Fous is the aural equivalent of Slakemoth effluence. A nightmarish cachophony of bleak industrial soundscapes, dragged towards a hellish maw by the hellicoid distortion of guitars stringed with demon sinew.


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