Every once in a while I get an album to review, look at the cover, and think “Ugh! I know exactly what I’m going to get with this band”. Then, I press play on the first song and think “Well fuck me sideways, I shouldn’t be such a prat”. Irksvm managed to do that to me. I looked at the cover and thought “Straightforward raw BM”. What I got on track one was sombre piano and clean vocals reminiscent of Ulver. This, admittedly, transitioned into raw BM, but Irksvm are hardly straightforward. The riffs and song structures are pretty chaotic, and the one-man project combines styles like a mutha-fucka. The second song, “Demon of Hatred“, launches a dissonant and furious attack. But, just as quickly, the fury stops and a mellow interlude starts; there are some really nice basslines here. A later section of this song reminded me of Japanese experimentalists Sigh. Actually, the willingness to combine styles, and even the BM vocals, remind me (a little bit) of Sigh.
At times, the songs can seem like a jumble of riffs which, for the most part, adds to the chaos. But, at times, I thought the transitions between riffs could’ve been a bit smoother. Another issue I had was that, and this is a problem for several one-man bands, the album started to sound a bit same-y in the middle. I’d suggest that this might be a consequence of not having others to reign in ideas, or provide constructive feedback. But, what do I know. Luckily, “South – The Hanging Harvestman” comes along and restores order to the universe.
For the most part, this is thoughtful, layered, dissonant BM. It’s not perfect, but it has moments that are. Irksvm have released a very nice debut album.
Rating – 4 / 5
See what you think.