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Rating:
8.7
Pensées Nocturnes - Vacuum
3 April 2009


01. Lune Malade
02. Flore
03. Dés-Espoir
04. Coups De Bleus
05. Epitaphe
06. Repas De Corbeaux


A band that recently received the attention of the Black metal underground is Pensée Nocturnes. It was as if at some random moment all small forums dedicated to the unknown and obscure decided to ooze with praise for this band. Since I try to keep up with the scene, but am also broke most of the time, I was in the middle of an internal conflict on whether I'd have to check them out or not, when I heard a muffled sound near my front door. "Well fuck me sideways", I thought, "life's giving me a head's up!". I had just received "Vacuum", the '09 debut album by the French Black metal act Pensée Nocturnes.

So yeah, the life of a reviewer is glorious and glamorous and full of bedding hot chicks and whatnot, but I'm sure you want me to stop bragging and instead give my opinion on this album. Well, let me tell you: this is some high quality shit. What we have here are six songs, sixty minutes, of a unique blend of Depressive Black metal with Classical-music influenced piano melancholia. That may scream "Mystic Forest" to you, but there's plenty of difference between the two bands. Firstly, an awesome intro such as the one to "Coups de Bleus" with its intense bluesy guitar would never have been possible on any Mystic Forest (or Eikenskaden for that matter) release. And secondly, Pensée Nocturnes doesn't do the 'whirlwind piano' as I like to call it (blending furious riffs with fast and intense piano), but instead relies on mournful Depressive Black metal with separate relatively light yet really saddening Chopin-influenced piano parts. There are more genre a-typical instruments wonderfully utilized here, but I'll grant you the pleasure of finding that out by yourself.

Vocally we're dealing with a crossbreed of a (non-psychotic/non-ridiculous) Nattramn (Silencer) and an early Kvarforth (Shining). Yeah, that's a pretty heinous combination. Wailing and shrieking Vaerohn works his way through this album, belting out the most pained and dammit-she-left-me-too screams. A pure joy to listen to, honestly. Without doing anything different from the usual suspects, he has a fresh and extreme but non-ridiculous tone. The album does have a few dragging moments here and there, for example the song "Epitaphe" which could've been a lot shorter, but overall it's a captivating, twisting and refreshing listen. And perhaps more important, something that you want to hear a second time.

In conclusion, Pensées Nocturnes is not a completely unique listen (Mystic Forest and A Forest Of Stars do/have done similar things), but it is for sure more original than 99% of today's Black metal. What's more, this guy is dead serious about his work, offers songs with great balance as if he has years of experience, plays each instrument with great aplomb and never sounds pretentious at all. A talented fellow, that's for sure. With the recent releases by A Forest Of Stars and now Pensées Nocturnes, inventive Black metal gets a real boost. This genre is far from dead. "Vacuum" gets my special, exclusive and much-desired stamp-of-approval. Now get the hell out of your basement and buy this album.

Performance: 9
Songwriting: 8
Originality: 8
Production: 8


Band profile: Pensées Nocturnes
Album: Vacuum


 



Written on 28.04.2009 by
Lucas
If you're interested in extreme, often emotional and underground music, check out my reviews. I retired from reviewing, but I really used to be into that stuff.
More reviews by Lucas ››



Comments

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Jeff - 28.04.2009 at 18:42  
Glad to see that you like the album!

We should organize a contest soon to win the album. Keep an eye on MS
TheBigRossowski - 28.04.2009 at 19:50  
Written by Jeff on 28.04.2009 at 18:42

Glad to see that you like the album!

We should organize a contest soon to win the album. Keep an eye on MS


The Dude's already got the album Jeff It was definitely worth the money...okay...even though it was 10€ from France (awesome deal). You can go to any store and pay 20€ for the new My Dying Bride, but why waste your money? Buy 2 copies of ''Vacuum'' and give one to a friend.

''Vacuum'' certainly is an odd name for an album though...
BestMetalstormer - 28.04.2009 at 20:34  
Depressive black mixed with classical, sounds very promisising
Black_Handed - 28.04.2009 at 20:39  
Lol when i read the "classical piano" sentence, i really had that "plop, mystic forest" moment. anyways, going to check it right now .
BestMetalstormer - 29.04.2009 at 05:42  
Not good one as Mystic Forest, considering for using piano/keyboard, maybe need more time to get into. But yeah after few hours I think I can digest it but again need more time.
K†ulu - 29.04.2009 at 11:19  
Well, since I've never heard Mystic Forest I immediately thought of Shining's Halmstad after reading about the piano parts... going to check this album out soon too.
Ask - 30.04.2009 at 09:14  
This is pretty cool.
Doc Godin - 13.06.2009 at 02:58  
Blues in black metal? Hmmm, this sounds really interesting, I guess I'll hit up that contest after all. Varied black metal is always really nice...
Daggon - 14.06.2009 at 00:28  
I checked the myspace and... I liked it!
tulkas - 14.06.2009 at 01:24  
Written by Daggon on 14.06.2009 at 00:28

I checked the myspace and... I liked it!

yep, from the samples on the myspace i can tell it's really good. i anwered for the contest yesterday, so i hope I win!
Mr. Doctor - 14.06.2009 at 01:26  
Written by tulkas on 14.06.2009 at 01:24

Written by Daggon on 14.06.2009 at 00:28

I checked the myspace and... I liked it!

yep, from the samples on the myspace i can tell it's really good. i anwered for the contest yesterday, so i hope I win!



The shit was yesterday?
Shit.. I answered for just 30 mins ago. I hope I get one of those copies for free. I've been listening to that band non-stop on youtube xp
tulkas - 14.06.2009 at 01:30  
Written by Mr. Doctor on 14.06.2009 at 01:26

The shit was yesterday?
Shit.. I answered for just 30 mins ago. I hope I get one of those copies for free. I've been listening to that band non-stop on youtube xp

well, i first saw that ad up last night, say, 15hrs ago, but i don't know how much before i saw it it was already up. anyway, good luck to me and you
Vitriolic Hate - 08.07.2009 at 16:50  
Yeah very good musically but the vocals sounds funny sometimes but anyway a THANKS to MS staff that sent it to me!!
Elio - 20.07.2009 at 17:36  
Yeah, thanks MS this is one of the best metal albums of the year so far. I don't totally dig the vocals but hell, music is good that I won't matter.
tulkas - 20.07.2009 at 23:03  
What happened with the contest? Did they already announce the winners or when is it due?
Marcel Hubregtse - 22.07.2009 at 04:02  
Mmm quite good but the classical and blues bits totally don't flow with the songs. a 7 imo cause there is promise but what they've done now could have been done loads better.
wasted opportunity if you ask me
Ag Fox - 19.08.2009 at 14:55  
Not into suicidal vocals in general, but the music itself is really awesome. Track 4 is definitely the climax of the album (= Thanks MS
Mr. Doctor - 11.10.2009 at 05:15  
I have a question:

How's the tracklist? In Metal archives it's around 64 minutes but I've download it a lot of times trying to get a link with that tracklist but no, the cd seems to be only 60 minutes long... What the F about those 4 minutes?

It would be even better if someone with the cd could answer the question, so I'm more sure about it.
tulkas - 11.10.2009 at 06:23  
Written by Mr. Doctor on 11.10.2009 at 05:15

I have a question:

How's the tracklist? In Metal archives it's around 64 minutes but I've download it a lot of times trying to get a link with that tracklist but no, the cd seems to be only 60 minutes long... What the F about those 4 minutes?

It would be even better if someone with the cd could answer the question, so I'm more sure about it.

I downloaded it from a link someone here gave me, and on my iTunes it says it's 1hour long exactly... I'm guessing that might be right. I know Elio has it, so you could ask him
Mr. Doctor - 11.10.2009 at 15:02  
Written by tulkas on 11.10.2009 at 06:23

Written by Mr. Doctor on 11.10.2009 at 05:15

I have a question:

How's the tracklist? In Metal archives it's around 64 minutes but I've download it a lot of times trying to get a link with that tracklist but no, the cd seems to be only 60 minutes long... What the F about those 4 minutes?

It would be even better if someone with the cd could answer the question, so I'm more sure about it.

I downloaded it from a link someone here gave me, and on my iTunes it says it's 1hour long exactly... I'm guessing that might be right. I know Elio has it, so you could ask him


I got two links from two members [one of them being Elio] and both have 60 minutes as well, it's weird. But I don't care anymore XD
Daggon - 25.01.2010 at 09:41  
Anyone knows if this album is still available?
tulkas - 25.01.2010 at 14:22  
Written by Daggon on 25.01.2010 at 09:41

Anyone knows if this album is still available?

At least not an original copy. You could download it...
Marcel Hubregtse - 25.01.2010 at 14:38  
Written by tulkas on 25.01.2010 at 14:22

Written by Daggon on 25.01.2010 at 09:41

Anyone knows if this album is still available?

At least not an original copy. You could download it...


The album is still readily available.
Daggon - 25.01.2010 at 20:49  
Thanks Marcel, the new album is coming, so I think I'm going to buy both on the same day.
tulkas - 26.01.2010 at 01:49  
@Marcel: Oh, cool. Didn't know that. I figured since it was limited to 1000 copies they had ran out already.
Marcel Hubregtse - 26.01.2010 at 02:14  
Written by tulkas on 26.01.2010 at 01:49

@Marcel: Oh, cool. Didn't know that. I figured since it was limited to 1000 copies they had ran out already.


Most black metal, athough limited to 666 or 1000 coppies doesn't run out fast at all.
Ascendant187 - 19.10.2010 at 16:15  
Written by Marcel Hubregtse on 25.01.2010 at 14:38

Written by tulkas on 25.01.2010 at 14:22

Written by Daggon on 25.01.2010 at 09:41

Anyone knows if this album is still available?

At least not an original copy. You could download it...


The album is still readily available.

Is the album still available anywhere? I've tried most of the usual places and found nothing.
Marcel Hubregtse - 19.10.2010 at 16:29  
Written by Ascendant187 on 19.10.2010 at 16:15


Is the album still available anywhere? I've tried most of the usual places and found nothing.


It's sold out at my usual sources. So, I think it will be hard trying to get hold of it.
Daggon - 20.10.2010 at 00:49  
Written by Ascendant187 on 19.10.2010 at 16:15

Is the album still available anywhere? I've tried most of the usual places and found nothing.


Well, Vaerohn's myspace site says that the album is sold-out, so I think it's gonna be hard to get unless it is re-released or something like that
I hope they will sell more copies, seems like his music is getting a lot of attention (well, you know, "a lot of attention" is, well... some attention)

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