Listen: Monarque and the Black Metal Légendes of Québec
Is there really such thing as a “local sound”? Do a set of artists reflect their shared geography (and meteorology, economy, and era) in a unique style of music? Or is it more likely that a region’s bands bloom by way of competition, not resemblance? That is, is it the desire for your attention, esteem, and money that drives what ends up being called a “Seattle Sound” or “Gothenburg Sound” or whatever?
Mostly the latter, right? After all, Soundgarden and Nirvana don’t sound alike, nor do Pizzicato Five and Cornelius, nor Death and Morbid Angel. But they share a mentality (the former), as do the awesome black metal bands at work in Quebec last year. Their best product was Neige Éternelle’s debut, a blurry, unvarnished, colorless BM odyssey, and alongside it among 2013’s 20 best albums was their sorta-neighbors, Monarque. Funereal and destructive, Monarque’s Lys Noir also came out in May and also is one of those jams you wish to blare from a boombox that you swing from the end of a rope while straddling a mountain.
And yay! out Tuesday is a brand new Monarque song, appearing on a double-7″ Légendes (Sepulchral Productions) with three other Quebecois BM bands: Forteresse, Chasse-Galerie, and Csejthe. Each track tells the story of a legend of Quebec (like you can tell) so have a listen then attempt to pinpoint what makes this scene a “scene.” It streams now at Invisible Oranges!
Légendes double-7″ is out Tuesday. Pre-order here.