Friday, 12 December 2014

URUK HAI / MÜLDEPONIE split


Band: URUK HAI
Title: Untitled (split release with Müldeponie)
Format: Released as both a CDr in DVD size case (cut1177) and as a cassette tape (cut1504) on the Depressive Illusions label (Ukraine).  The CDr release date was July 2013, with the tape following in March 2014
Edition: The CDr pressing is limited to 33 copies, the tape to 66 copies, neither edition hand-numbered.

Track Listing:
Uruk Hai
01. Back to the Shire  4.26 
02. Bags End  1.38 
03. Samwise (Always a Friend)  7.14 
04. A Visit from Mordor  5.38 
05. Very Close to a Nazgul  2.56 
06. The Ring and His Slave  4.44 
 
Müldeponie
07. Vers l'Au Delà, à Travers les Montagnes... (version 1)  6.10
08. Necromancie I  4.02 
09. Necronancie II  8.00 
10. Retourner au Dongeon de l'Existence (version 2)  4.08 
11. Winterreise (ColdWorld Cover)  4.16
12. Vers l'Au Delà, à Travers les Montagnes... (version 2)  4.00

Another day, another Uruk Hai release to review!   As if Hugin's rate of issuing recordings wasn't high enough already, in the past few months he's gone positively crackers with the number of things coming out of W.A.R.  Indeed, a recent parcel that has winged its way over from the Austrian Alps contained so much new material that Nazgul immediately felt faint and had to have a restorative pint or two of Old Buttplugger's Hornswoggler finest brew to recover his composure.


This a largely instrumental release from both bands.  Müldeponie we came across fleetingly once before on Honour and Darkness, with their contribution to the "Tribute To Burzum" release.  Of their style, one website said of Müldeponie that their music "is composed entirely synthesiser in a style reminiscent of some Burzum album or the one-man band Austrian Uruk Hai". A-ha!

Their Bandcamp page depicts a much more varied context, however, citing a mix of Drone, Epic Ambient, Medieval Ambient, Dungeon Synth, Black Ambient, and lots of others styles in their music.  Well, that eclectic set of influences largely rings true with their songs on this release too, and it's all perfectly listenable without necessarily leaping out of the speakers and assaulting your ears.  And, by the way, there's a hell of a lot of releases to their name, so well worth some investigation one would suppose...?

Now, let's be honest: normally at this juncture Nazgul would wade off into a lengthy narrative about the Uruk Hai songs, but as he's suffering from a stinking cold and is up to his ears in leaves that need to be dredged from the Castle moat, you'll have to have some forbearance for a shorter spiel than usual.  Today also marks the birthday of that most fearsome of entities, the Castle Monkey, and as such its demands also create a terrible pull on Nazgul's time.

Let me be brief: 6 instrumental songs (save the odd spoken part), some beautiful piano flourishes (particularly on opening song 'Back To The Shire'), a heady mixture of driven melodies and more drawn-art epic parts, spiced with a healthy nod to the works of Tolkien and a rather touching allusion to your humble scribe in 'Very Close To A Nazgul'.  This latter track is accompanied by the gentle sounds of nature, highly relevant at this present time given Nazgul's seemingly endless traipsing through the mountain of foliage piled up on embrasures and enceintes alike.

Put another way: if you like the Uruk Hai stuff you've already heard from the past few years, then you'll get on famously with this collection!

In splendid old school fashion, Depressive Illusions have seen fit to issue this split as both a limited edition tape release and an even more limited edition CDr pressing.  Both are illustrated here, and both well worth seeking out for your personal horde.  One imagines the CDr would be a better seller than the tape, though in balance Nazgul has been contacted in recent times by a few individuals who still eschew modern formats for their music and seek out nothing but cassettes for their collections, so perhaps Depressive Illusion's strategy is more cunning than you'd think...?

With normal (lengthy) service to be resumed as soon as better health and less hectic schedules come his way, Nazgul bids you festive greetings from the snow-capped peaks surrounding his domain, and hopes to have at least another post up on Honour and Darkness before the impending arrival of Santa.... 

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