15 songs in 38 minutes sounds like madness, but the division of a record can be done in many ways. This states Suveräna with “Vanguard”, delivering a ravaging mish-mash of inspirations, styles and a variety of emotion. The core is centered around martial, industrial and neoclassical elements, but the song titles themselves should say something about the diversity, the tracks being named in no less than four different languages. There is Gregorian chanting as well as march music, laying a pattern hard to read, yet exciting to explore. The atmosphere is dark and foreboding no matter the elements used, and “Vanguard” leaves behind feelings of both underlying strength and sneaking sadness.
The first song to stand out from the line is “Lineague”, giving voice to a fearsome, haunting organ like out of an old horror movie. Angelic, yet disturbing “Tenebrae”, is full of underlying movement, like earth crumbling beneath our feet. This is one of the longest tracks on the record, luckily, since the theme repeats and evolve beautifully around the choir into something I wish to hear more of. The more classically composed “Tagen” makes me think of trolls, stealing children for their own uses. As it grows into the majestic piece “Vanguard”, lead by military drums, I instantly fall into dreams of heroism and brave deeds, even if the following “XII Viacrucis” suggest they will reach a sorrowful end. I would say these three songs are the greatest moment in the album, more tightly weaved together than the rest of the material, forming a small epos. The last track “1936”, based around skilled piano use, leaves me in a state close to chock. What is it that I just have heard?
“Vanguard” is a record bound for discussion, merging together genres into something very much in motion, headstrong and almost daunting. It might provoke, as a thorn in the eye to some, but also gives a great view on the differences and similarities within parts of the post-industrial scene. As such, I can see it being given to those curious friends wondering about my music taste, later on used in leading them towards other artists they might enjoy.
Listening to “Vanguard” is somehow like being thrown into the eye of a storm, being both torn and thrust within the turbulence of it. It is not always pleasant, but it does reach deep thoughts and true feelings, even if only touching upon them in short bursts, leaving a sense of chaos behind. It makes me excited and confused all the same. The way the very different tracks flows into each other, as well as the instrumental efforts, leaves no doubt about the capacity of this artist. All the same, some of the melodies leaves a wish for more development, to make them catch the listener for real. I sense a greatness in Suveräna (ES), too great to fit within the time here given.
01 Göttliche Verehrung
03 Regn slut
05 The Borderline
07 Terrore urbi
10 XII Viacrucis
13 Cyanide skies
14 Sed oblitus