Neon Dream #14: Blut Aus Nord – Epitome XVIII


The dream has to end somewhere. Science fiction seems to agree on that. Futuristic technology produces what biology could not: logic-based systems so functional and adept at survival that humanity becomes obsolete. Whether we assimilate into a borg colony or a zerg hive mind, imagination is pretty screwed. Our best bet might be something like The Matrix. Perhaps some utility will compel our robot overlords to spare the sheep who spawned them. Yay!

I cannot say what it must feel like to be enslaved by a post-human species, but I fancy it would sound a lot like the 777 trilogy by Blut Aus Nord. Between 2011 and 2012, these French black metal legends offered up a journey through a world that was beyond dystopian. Discordant melodies and unorthodox rhythms taken to the extreme are usually a recipe for disaster–the tools of technically proficient but creatively deprived math rock and avant-garde musicians I would only listen to under duress. Blut Aus Nord masterfully avoided that pitfall by envisioning a coherent aesthetic framework and driving the music forward as a consistent conceptual progression across 18 tracks. Radical experimentation joins forces with dark industrial grooves to place the listener in a futuristic, post-human world where mechanical gods rule apathetic over mortals bred in gestation crates.

The trilogy does not actually offer any textual insight into what its world is supposed to be. The minimal lyrics are highly esoteric, and Blut Aus Nord ultimately leave it to the instrumentation to tell their tale. You might not experience it as a futuristic world at all, but rather as some bleak corner of hell from which a lost soul digs through the madness and witnesses his overlord. But as far as it speaks to me, the 777 trilogy is the vision of a feckless human slave awakening from his dream into terrifying, incomprehensible world. He slowly comes to understand his master and, perhaps, ultimately assimilates into the hive mind. The final track, “Epitome XVIII”, is a grim, cold trance in which a soulless machine reigns on triumphant.

One response to “Neon Dream #14: Blut Aus Nord – Epitome XVIII

  1. Pingback: Neon Dream #15: Happy End – Kaze Wo Atsumete | Through the Shattered Lens

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