Over the years I have come across numerous bands that transcend the genre and leave me questioning different aspects of my life. But what if my life was ending due to poor decisions, and I knew the path that would be laid in front of me. What would I feel? That is really hard to say but whilst listening to the sound of “Beholden:Thy Olde Birch Gibbet”, the latest offering from Hvile I Kaos I had an idea.
Hvile I Kaos which translates into “Rest in Chaos” is the project of Kakophonix, a prominent cellist from Southern California. I had the pleasure of listening to this release from start to finish prior to the release date and I thourghly enjoyed every second. Drawing his inspiration from the sounds of Black Metal and bands like Dissection Kakophonix has weaved together a voice of his own through the beauty and emotion captured in the music of his cello. “Beholden: Thy Olde Birch Gibbet” is a two track EP that tells the story of a condemned criminal leading up to his imminent death and ultimately his spirits elation as he enters the afterlife. The opening track sets the mood, giving off a mournful sound almost like calm before the storm, which kept me in its grasp only for me to be brought back to reality once the notes of the second track came into fruition. In what can be described as straight Black Metal riffage in cello form gives the true nature of the story Kakophonix is delivering. Sweeping in and out of the pain and elation that the victim feels this track takes the listener away to another place. I myself felt that I was witnessing everything happening as the sounds of the strings mirrored the very voice of this person. Mingled with the prominent Black Metal sound was also a folky aspect which lightened up the mood without taking away from the back story at hand.
Kakophonix has proved with this release that metal music can be achieved in a different form other than blast beats and reverb ladened guitars. It is both beautiful and utterly heartbreaking and the only way to experience this is to take a listen for yourself. You can be the judge, and let Beholden: Thy Olde Birch Gibbet take you away to a darker place, an almost alternate reality if you may. If one thing is clear Hvile I Kaos is sure to provoke the senses and I highly recommend checking out this release, you will not be disappointed. Be sure to support the underground and keep an eye out for what Kakophonix has in store for the new year. Again metal is an art form and this is a prime example of what it is all about.