There is something about the French extreme metal scene that is unquestionably brilliant. Vous Autres have set themselves very much up as another band who can take black metal, twist it up a bit, wring it out and present something so deeply absorbing and alluring that you really have to start to question what the magic ingredient is. And it’s undoubtedly not frogs legs or any other kind of generic, culture-based joke.
I adore post-black metal and find the journey it has taken to be a bona fide development of an already deeply expressive genre. On ‘Sel De Pierre’, there is as much diversity as there is explosive power, and as much aggression as there is surrender. This is, above all, an extremely well thought out experience.
From the rubble rainstorm of ‘Onde’ to the mesmeric dynamisms of ‘In Humus’, the variety on offer here tends to make the record sound far shorter than its near 40 minute length. And, for me, that is one of the signs of a remarkable record.
It may be that unique ability to depict the harrowing desolation of the human spirit in a subservient, surrendering manner yet with the fiery aggressiveness of the heaviest of sounds. This dichotomy makes this music what it is. I don’t know – and maybe I don’t want to know – but this works. This works sublimely well. Highly recommended.