There have been quite a few bands that have helped define the kind of music I listen to. I have virtually tried a lot of genres (thanks to RYM and the Truly Grim group). Its not very often that you come across a certain band that makes you want to delve into the respective genre more and more and more. The results may be awesome in some cases. But in others, it is very much possible that you encountered the pinnacle of the genre already and you fail to find bands that meet your expectations. In other words, they raised the bar to an altogether different level. A few of such bands that helped defined my musical orientations in chronological order would be Pink Floyd, Judas Priest, Slayer, Rush, Morbid Angel, Incantation, Autopsy, Master's Hammer and of late Shub-Niggurath and the mighty UNIVERS ZERO.
There was a reason I posted that band pic above. That pic has something to with how I got interested in the band in the very first place. I was already a huge Master's Hammer fan, And given below is the cult Master's Hammer pic doing rounds on the internet. Now dont you think, they are scarily similar??!! I thought, "Who knows, May be these guys were inspired by UZ". I know its a lame reason to check out a band, But yeah, I have my own methods. And considering how Master's Hammer draw classical and neoclassical elements into their music, who knows the real truth?
Go to the Univers Zero Official Webpage and this is what you find "If Starvinsky had a Rock Band, It wuld sound like THIS!" How can a Punch Line like that not get you excited? Fans categorize their music as Avant-Prog. I hate this term AVANT, especially in context of music (though you will find me using that term more often than not!). Whatever is unclassifiable and sounds complex enough to be given a progressive label can be safely be dumped under this avant-prog burial ground. But this doesnt do justice to the kind of music these guys play. I read that these guys took huge influences from dark modern classical composers like Béla Bartók, Sergei Prokofiev, Igor Starvinsky and Albert Huybrechts. They had different phases in their career. While their first self titled album relied heavily on acoustic guitars, nerve wrecking use of violins and Bassoons. On this album you can recognise the chamber music which is often used as a tag for these guys. But what followed after this was their most accomplished work. Let me present to you "HERESIE" This is undoubtedly the darkest, and filthiest music ever created. Its still unparallelled even after 30 years of its existence. I can only imagine what effect did Black Sabbath's debut would have had on the minds of people back then. Its a trillion times more unsettling, and horrifying and the cd should come with a disclaimer "Beware, The content inside could be arrythmogenic! Listen to it with caution. Keep away from children". If you got terrified by Bernard Hermann's score in the staircase murder scene in Psycho, or the nightmare scene in Vertigo, I bet you try this! few months back, I had a theory that bands like Incantation, Profanatica and Esoteric had created some of most evil piece of music known to humanity. I stumbled upon Shub-Niggurath's Les Morts and I came to know How wrong I was! And this album surpassed even that masterpiece.
With the upcoming albums they came to rely heavily on electric guitars and thick bass. But they still maintained the dark sound throughout.
I know quite a lot of you have already heard this, but this still is missing from some of you guys' charts, If this review cant convince you, I dont know what else will.