Tuesday, 22 September 2009

WE WORSHIP...volume 2 [V/A]

Band: Compilation featuring both URUK HAI and ELISABETHA
Title: We Worship...underground black metal compilation vol. 2
Format: Double CDr pressing through 3 Bulgarian labels (AMF Productions, Vogort Zine, & CF Productions) with 33 bands featured, representing a variety of countries including Bulgaria, Russia, Austria, Poland, Finland, Italy, Portugal and the USA.
Edition: Not known - presumed unlimited

Track Listing:
Of the 33 tracks on offer, the relevant songs are:

CD1, track 15: Elisabetha * Transilvanischer Hunger 07.27

CD2, track 7: Uruk Hai * Nebelberge pt. 7 & 8 08.12

Very often the problem with compilation releases is that they contain tracks you've heard many times before, representing solid work from the artist in question but ultimately only existing as collectors' fodder or manna from heaven to newcomers to a genre. For casual fans, they can represent poor value for money as you may already have the song in question on another release and have little inclination or available funds to stump up for it a second time.

On this - the second instalment in the "We Worship" series - the problem is neatly overcome for once, and as such it makes rather a good item to own and enjoy regardless of the fact that only 2 of the 33 songs on the album get any form of regular airtime on Nazgul's death-deck.

What we have here in fact are two unique songs from both Elisabetha on disc one, and Uruk Hai on disc 2, neither being available in this format elsewhere (including, surprisingly enough, on the 3CD collection of rarities that is Elisabetha's "Eternal Deathvastation" release). Cause for celebration indeed!

The Elisabetha track is "an unreleased Darkthrone cover" states the inlay, and not only that it adds a couple of minutes to the original Darkthrone version through the addition of a typically Elisabetha narrative interplay at both the outset and end of the track. It takes some guts to fiddle around with a 'classic' track in this manner, but not being a particular expert in the field of things Darkthrone I enjoyed this interpretation enormously. It's also a welcome poke in the eye to those who continually moan about Elisabetha not being a 'proper' black metal band - play this one loudly in the direction of those critics!

Somewhat more ambient in nature (and a refreshing change of pace from the non-stop blast-beats of the second disc of this compilation) comes Uruk Hai with their 'Nebelberge pt. 7&8' track, quoted again on the inlay as a "promo version to the forthcoming Uber Die Nebelberge Weit CD". As with all good intentions, this release may well have morphed into something else as it's not an album that old Nazgul is aware of....

This track is very much in the vein of the Uruk Hai songs from "Across the Misty Mountains..." release - slow and thought-provoking synthesisers, epic keyboard flourishes, tinkling bells and light percussion, and evoking an atmosphere of olden times and weary travellers making their way around Middle Earth.

It does sit rather incongruously in with the rest of the album mind you, and you've no sooner relaxed amidst its tranquil arias then it's followed by a hell of a racket from Finnish hooligans Arsonist Lodge, which is guaranteed to jolt you back from your mental trip to the harsh realities of life!

I've no idea if this release is readily available anywhere online, though I suspect some diligent hunting would track one down somewhere. It would be well worth the effort too, both for these unique tracks and the addition of an excellent track from Finnish band Nest.

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