Ur Draugr - The Wretched Ascetic

Take a look at this album cover. With something like that adorning this record, how could someone not expect the music to be weird? Ur Draugr is a three piece supergroup hailing from Australia. Looking at the other bands of the members, mainly Deathfuckingcunt and Corpsebitch, one might expect another brutal album with a sense of humor. But 'The Wretched Ascetic' is a different beast altogether. Mixing black metal and death metal, they offer the genre a twisted touch. The way the music alternates between clean acoustic guitar parts to mind crushing harsh parts is absolutely stunning. While the flow from the clean parts to the harsher areas are relatively smooth, the transitions in the black death parts of the song are schizophrenic in nature. Unpredictable and weird beyond words, Ur Draugr offer the genre a much needed breathe of fresh air. The album has its moments where the clean guitars sound beautiful and soothing, while at other times it challenges your mind with its maddening turns in direction. The two main tracks 'Unseen Golgotha' and 'The Wretched Ascetic' are both very long and highly compelling listens. Perhaps this is how the mind of an actual wretched ascetic work; calm, collected and beautiful when not entertaining twisted and maddening screams of a thousand imaginary voices. This was initially supposed to be a part of a full length, but unforseen circumstances led the band to push the full length away indefinitely with a chance that the other tracks may never see the light of day. This makes me sad as I really like the way the tracks on this record have shaped up. This is highly recommended if you fancy a weird, harsh and twisted take on black death metal.

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