Belenos - „Yen Sonn Gardis” (2010)


Yen Sonn Gardis”

Northern Silence Prod.


Belenos comes from France, but I am not sure if I can say it is a french band. They (or actually him – cause this album is made by a single guy) live in Brittany, and album's lyrics are written in Celtic language. Anyway, this is band's 6th LP, but of course since I am a poser, I've never heard any of previous ones, even that band exist since 1995. But if they are as good as „Yen...”, I will surely change it...
The album starts with a heavy, doom and hypnotic riff. The first thing that comes to my ear is a perfect production. It is very heavy, quite clean and selective yet still have many underground dirt. It is not at all plastic, and suits to music perfectly. And what kind of music plays Belenos?
Every track has many tempo's changes, from quite slow to furious blast beats. On my ear, I hear influences of good, old Norwegian scene. Fast moments, like in a second „Hollved hirisus” sounds a bit like Immortal, or even „De Mysteriis Dom Sathanas” of such an unknown Norwegian band called Mayhem.
But beside this aggressive stuff there are many slow parts, which reminds me very much of old Burzum – like opening riff in „Ene kelt” or ending of „Baleerien an Are”. I hear also many elements of doom metal – for example a middle part of „Gorsedd” sounds a bit like it was inspired by Thergothon! Also very moody is opening riff in the last track called „En argoll”, and in many, many other places...
In „Gorsedd” we have an example of beautiful usage of Celtic folk music, played on violin. It gives a very good effect, together with guitar's solo passages and choirs. The whole album is filled with such part. Combined with heavy, doom riffs it gives an affect of melancholic and mystic atmosphere.
Above this musical layer we can hear many screams and growls. I have no question – it is very powerful, and sounds like a vocalist was possessed by a demon. Very aggressive and harsh, it only gives music more heaviness and make it much darker. Beside it, we can also hear many clean vocals (mainly in choirs), which from the other hand add many mystic aura to the whole album.
It is very hard to describe perfectly content of „Yen...”, due to the fact that every track is quite long (at least 5 minutes beside intro), and a lot is going on here. There are many new details that comes to ear with every playback, and beside that this is impossible to enjoy it if you can't focus completely on music. So forget about listening to it in tramway full of people... Also, even if I've written about inspirations I'd heard, these are only inspirations, not a rip off! This is an album played by an experienced musician, full of his individual ideas. You can hear it perfectly.
To sum this up: get this album. It is perfect for a gloomy, grey days that will come after this (and every other) summer. Belenos created a great piece of music.

Rate: 9/10

1. Aspedenn
2. Hollved hirisus
3. Ene kelt
4. Skorn ha tan
5. Baleerien an Are
6. Gorsedd
7. Mestr ar c'hoad
8. Taol-digoll
9. En argoll

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