10 February, 2013

Cult Of Luna: Passing Through – new video & Vertical – full album stream



The new CULT OF LUNA video, ‘Passing Through’, directed by Markus Lunqvist, was apparently filmed in sub-zero temperatures at what was once Sweden's largest mental hospital. Closed since the 1960's, the Säter hospital was where the mentally ill were routinely castrated and lobotomized, we are told. Furthermore, we get to discover some of behind-the-song goings on with the help of guitarist Fredrik Kihlberg, who also sings the tune:

“When we decided to start writing a new COL album and talked about which direction we wanted to go, this was actually the first idea that came to my head. I had this phrase - time is passing me by - in my head, going on repeat, and I thought and I should try to make something out of it. It’s a simple phrase but at the same time a powerful and overwhelming feeling. We wanted this to be a beautiful but at the same time intimidating song.” [Added vocalist and guitarist Johannes Persson:] “You can hear the sensitivity in his voice - just listen and you can hear what he’s communicating. You can feel it. It’s the most honest song I’ve ever heard.”

‘Vertical’ was released in January 2013 (January 25th, 2013 on Indie Recordings in Europe and on January 29th, 2013 on Density Records in the USA). CULT OF LUNA's sixth LP, its concept loosely based upon Fritz Lang's film “Metropolis”, was produced by the band and recorded, mixed and mastered by Magnus Lindberg at Tonteknik Recording and The Vilhelm Room, with additional recording by Måns Lundberg and Kristian Karlsson. The album is available in full for your listening pleasure here (Density Records' YouTube channel), here (Brooklyn Vegan) as well as painstakingly embedded, track by track, below. Get ‘Vertical’ through iTunes or Amazon:

“If you need to understand ugliness for beauty to truly shine, then CULT OF LUNA have both on display here, right next to one another, time and time again. The three minutes of odd instrumentation in ‘The Sweep’ will evoke memories of 20th century science fiction, and the curious piano-led 45 seconds of ‘Disharmonia’ is sandwiched between the boisterous ‘Mute Departure’ and the slow-burning barbs of ‘In Awe Of’, highlighting the expert aural dynamics that this band has mastered. While the band is still active, and Johannes Persson [guitarist & vocalist] and Fredrik Kihlberg [guitarist & vocalist] also work together in KHOMA, every CULT OF LUNA release and tour must be savoured, as this is a so far ahead of its peers. They have tested their boundaries, and they will test yours. That the Swedes are still succeeding like this on their sixth album is testament to both their quality and vision,” [wrote Razik Rauf, BBC Music – more here:]


Formed in 1998 in the area of Västerbotten, Sweden, CULT OF LUNA released a split 7” together with SWITCHBLADE in 2000, before recording their self-titled debut full-length they issued in 2001 on Rage Of Achilles. Next, in 2001, came their “astoundingly great” second album, ‘The Beyond’, through Earache Records (read its review by Ned Raggett, AllMusic here), followed by extensive touring in its support with the likes of ISIS, POISON THE WELL and THE DILLINGER ESCAPE PLAN. CULT OF LUNA's critically acclaimed third album, deemed nearly perfect by AllMusic (more here), 2004's ‘Salvation’, took the band on the European as well as U.S. roads again and, upon their return to Sweden, straight back to recording studio, this time to record ‘Somewhere Along The Highway’. The band's 2006 LP, inspired by J.M. Coetzee's “Life & Times Of Michael K”, won the top rock/ metal award at the Swedish National Radio Awards for, apparently, “the will and courage to expand and bring new dimensions to the metal genre”. Acknowledged for their work, CULT OF LUNA returned to studio to record the tale of a man who, after loosing his wife and children, looses his mind and retires into a parallel world called “Eternal Kingdom”, “where animals symbolize good and evil”:

“When Sweden's CULT OF LUNA moved into a new rehearsal space on the site of a converted mental institution, they stumbled upon an unexpected source of inspiration for their fifth album, ‘Eternal Kingdom’. There, amongst the long-abandoned madhouse's detritus, lay a diary kept by a former inmate who had rationalized drowning his wife by concocting an entire imaginary world and cast of characters responsible for the heinous crime - anyone but him, in other words. The title of this diary was - you guessed it - “Tales Of The Eternal Kingdom”, and its contents provided the perfect jumping-off-point for CULT OF LUNA to wrap their always inventive post-metal songwriting around a gothic fairy tale right out of the Brothers Grimm. … On the subject of the music itself… the band's concerted effort to break out of their habitually epic songwriting mindset along with the incorporation of atypical electronic sounds and horns, make a good case for this album as the band's most unique yet. This assertion is definitely debatable given CULT OF LUNA's consistently groundbreaking career, but what certainly isn’t in question is ‘Eternal Kingdom’s tantalizing allure, as a result of its singular concept and the band's often breathtaking execution thereof,” [commented Eduardo Rivadavia, AllMusic – read the rest here]

CULT OF LUNA features: Johannes Persson - guitars and vocals, Magnus Lindberg - drums and engineering, Erik Olofsson – guitar, Andreas Johansson – bass, Anders Teglund - keyboards and electronics, Fredrik Kihlberg - guitar and vocals and Thomas Hedlund - drums and percussion  












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