Blood Moon Hysteria - Crimson Sky

5 songs
24:51 minutes
***** ****


Itís refreshing to come across new bands that donít really sound like anything you have heard before. Like Norwegian band Blood Moon Hysteria, founded only last year, who just happen to have released their first EP Crimson Sky. Itís hard to say if they are really a band according to the usual meaning of the word, considering that main man Runar Beyond has not only written all of the music and the lyrics, but also plays most of the instruments: vocals, guitar, bass, mellotron and organ. Helping out are Fredrik S. on piano and Leo on drums.

Defining the musical style of the five tracks presented on the debut EP is a really hard task. Somehow it seems as if a bit of black metal is lurking underneath it all, but with Blood Moon Hysteria it is taken to a whole new level, like a very atmospheric post metal direction with strong hints of avantgarde. Add to this Runarís really strange, monotonous and evoking lyrics, and youíre way off into a new territory.

Letís start with the opener Paranoia, which begins with a rocking guitar riff that soon turns quite heavy, and then not much later opts for a very dense and warm guitar sound, unlike what one would expect from a black metal band. The vocals sound like a kind of dark evocation, with a somewhat nasal voice. Runar Beyond is not what you would call a good singer, but just like Lou Reed, Bob Dylan and even Daniel Johnston, he knows to make the most of his limited skills. And it is this which gives his performance a truly idiosyncratic and thus wonderful allure. The lyrics are deep and weird, fitting perfectly with the strange music. The chorus at first sounds quite melodic, but later in the song turns into an unexpected atonal direction, proving once again that Blood Moon Hysteria are doing things their own way.

Up next is the song Blood Moon Hysteria, which is just as atypical, with lyrical feats like "Saturday night, itís alright" riding on a rocking guitar riff, before one and a half minute into the song, the mellotron takes over, giving the track a very psychedelic feeling, a bit as if Julian Cope tried his hand at post metal, combining the gloom of early Eighties dark new wave with Seventies progressive sensibilities and Nineties doom metal touches. I have to repeat that the all-encompassing rhythm guitar also helps to give the music its very own touch. At times I even felt reminded of the darker moments of Last Crack and Janeís Addiction, although with a metal background. The title track Crimson Sky has more piano than the preceding pieces and feels a little gothic, although in a good way, unlike a lot of the cheesy stuff we are getting from symphonic metal bands these days. Labyrinth is another nasal journey through doom prog, before the EP ends already with the mellower Change which is carried by a psychedelic organ.

I guess some people will have a hard time approaching Blood Moon Hysteria, because originality is often at odds with peopleís listening habits. But those who are tired of always hearing the same stuff over and over again might want to check out Crimson Sky. The EP is finely produced, comes with a warm, analogue sound, and its twenty-five minutes should be considered a great appetiser and give us hope that soon this talented artist will spoil us with a longplayer. I rarely get to hear such refreshing new music.

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