Wednesday, March 21, 2018

CD Review: Harm Wülf "Hijrah" (Deathwish Inc.) [Deathwish Inc. 10/$10 #03]

Copy & Paste Intro: One thing we at Raised by Gypsies love is a good deal.   Deathwish Inc. offered up ten compact discs for ten dollars and I could't help but jump on it.   I have received promos from Deathwish Inc. in the past, but between moving and just life in general I'm not sure how many I still have- the only CD I can tell you I still have for certain is by The Dedication.   So take a trip with me, shall you, as I explore ten compact discs for ten dollars.

"Hijrah" is such an interesting piece of music because I feel like every time I listen to it I can find a different influence in it.    The first time I listened to it, I made a reference to Nine Inch Nails within the first few songs.    The second time through, I looked back at those notes and thought "Nine Inch Nails? Yeah right".   There is also this sound which is heavy, dark and yet also acoustic and melodic.    Is acoustic metal a genre I need to explore a bit more?   But there is just also this mellow tone-- the songs keep a steady pace but never too fast.

While the first song has acoustic guitars to start this all off, it then kicks into something heavier, somewhere between Alice in Chains and Pink Floyd.    What I find fascinating is that while this music gets darker, closer to metal, it also somehow manages to keep those acoustic strums along with it.    This might be the strangest combination I've ever typed but it has this feel of Bon Jovi's "Wanted Dead or Alive" mixed with the slower songs of Metallica.    Is that enough to make you go "wtf?" and maybe not want to listen to this one?

But as much as this might remind me of Metallica or Bon Jovi it doesn't sound exactly like either artist in full.   So even if you despise either of those two bands you can still listen to this and enjoy it.    With that darkness like Murder By Death, this could be slowgaze, maybe even metalgaze and it has a definite desolate sound to it, like it is the end of the world (post apocalyptic).   "Stray Dog" feels a little bit like "Behind Blue Eyes" while "Warm Snow" brings out a harmonica which is just excellent.

As I've been reviewing these CDs, I've been looking at the release dates of them and as this was from back in August of 2016 (nearly two years old now) I went to Discogs to see what Harm Wülf was up to these days as this is the newest piece of music on their Bandcamp and also only one of three releases.    On Discogs, I found out that Harm Wülf is in fact the solo project of George Hirsch from the band Blacklisted.    At first I was confused because I thought this had to be an entire band, but then I was confused in a different way because this is the singer of Blacklisted.   (Who else in hardcore has solo projects?)

Once you feel you have done an adequate job of dissecting the musical aspects of this album (which might take you a long time) I urge you to pay close attention to the lyrics.   This doesn't quite have a feeling like you'd sing along with it, but lines like "You deserve to be punished by the truth" are among the best ever written in my view.  There is one other release by Harm Wülf which I will definitely be listening to once I feel like I'm ready.   Right now, I just don't feel like I'm done with "Hijrah" yet. 

As of right now, the other two of the ten CDs I have listened to so far were Some Girls and Super Unison.   None of these have sounded the same so far and that's pretty great.

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