Pure Wrath - The Forlorn Soldier

06 Mar 2020 - Thorsten

Black-Metal | Debemur Morti Productions | Release date: 06 Mar 2020

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Debemur Morti releases the best black metal album this year - in Indonesia!

History in music, an always difficult topic unlike politics in music, because music has one major idea and that is entertainment, which again can go hand in hand with political education, but historical education, that is quite a different topic. History is usually connected with facts and that is not very entertaining for a lot of people. However, sometimes there is a band that is able to talk about politics in a very different way, without lecturing or falling back into ancient instrumentation. Pure Wrath from Indonesia is one of those examples.

Januaryo Hardy, the mastermind behind Pure Wrath and its only real member, wrote an album about a brutal attack during the totalitarian takeover in Indonesia of the mid-1960’s. Historians often put these massacres in a list with the Nazi genocidal crimes, the Soviet cleansing under Stalin, the Chinese massacres under Mao and others. Estimations say that around one million people died between 1965 and 1968 when the regime under Suharto started its 30 year reign. Hardy uses this genocide as a backdrop to talk about a brutal incident during said genocide where male members of a family were kidnapped and killed in the name of “so-called nationalism”.

One thing that is really striking about The Forlorn Soldier is that it never over-emphasizes the historical aspects and thus never falls into lecturing, but rather remains very emotive all the time which can also be attributed to the musical components of the record. Hardy does nearly everything himself, but he also had some help in bringing the pieces of his musical vision together; Yurii Kononov (formerly of White Ward) helped with the drumming and Dice Midyanti provided the piano parts. All elements together form a brilliant atmospheric black metal album that does not have to hide behind masterpieces by Panopticon or Skyforest or others. The potion of heavy powerful riffs, the slow devolution of speed towards doomy elements and (partially) chants results in a real black unicorn of coal that listening over and over again will turn into the shining diamond it is supposed to be.

This is one of those history classes which will keep the listener spellbound in front of the stereo, asking for more – facts, thoughts and feelings!