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Stille Volk - La Pèira Negra


Here are our dear Pyreneans back in the studio about 5 years after their very heady « Nueit De Sabbat ». But 5 years is a long time, will you say. Yes, of course, it is, but it's also the time they needed to make us dance until we are in a trance on titles such as « Danse de la Corne » or « Banquet ». The question is, was this time used well in that new work that is « Pèira Negra » ? The answer is very simple : it definitely was ! However, it will be harder to dance to euphoria of existence while listening to this album. Indeed, the subject of it is not really a happy one...


A stone, unchanging entity forever in the rest of it's own eternity, is suddenly endowed with the spirit of life and it's issues of conscience. Very complex subject to be put in music if music there is... And still, the Occitan quartet manages to immerse us in a sepulchral atmosphere in which different feelings submerge us : fear, madness, doubt, and a bit of hope that is not to displease us !


Musically speaking, with Stille Volk commanding, no deception allowed ! We hear sounds that are the band's trendmark : whistle, hurdy-gurdy, buzuki, bombarde, and other folkloric instruments, and in addition to that, new sounds of brass-instruments that widely contribute to the rocky immersion of the set. This one starts as soon as the 1st title « Dementis Maudiçon » with an alienating melody that would almost make you lose your mind. It becomes stronger with the eponymous track « Pèira Negra », a cover of Occitan traditional music entirely sung in the corresponding language ! Then the pressure lowers down with the penultimate song in which the catchy melody goes along with our dear stone and incitates it to leave loneliness to prefer the company of different beings.


What about this voice ! How could I talk about this album without evoking this voice... If for new listeners, at 1st listening of any song by the band, Mr Lafforgues' singing can surprise and repel, because of its marked and captivating aspect, it is obvious that it has never been so well put under the spotlight than in this newest album. And to prove this, what's better than the 3rd track « L'Eveil du Spectre », in which the singer is literally the stone's voice ! Just filled with power !


In the end, just a little disappointement will show up for me, about last track of the album. Even if we will truly appreciate the cover of « Come to the Sabbath » by Mercyful Fate, tibute that fits perfectly well with Stille Volk's world in general, and that this song anchors the band a bit more in the world of metal music (use of saturated guitars, and riff whose paternity is not to be questionned), this is some music I would have preferred to hear on another album than this one. Indeed it breaks the atmosphere installed throughout the whole listening and this is what bothers me a bit.


Here it is ! Only words who just leave me a very limited choice to make you understand to what extend this new album by Stille Volk is diverse, clever and innovative. All you have left to do is listen to it and to live an auditive calcification more than pleasant ! 



Note : 9/10

Release : May 2014

Label : Holy Records

Country : France 


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