Goatvargr – S/T

Goatvargr is what you get when you mix Swedish Henrik Nordvargr Björkk with American Andy O’Sullivan (a.k.a Goat). Henrik Nordvargr Björkk has been active for some time with his highly acclaimed projects Folkstorm, MZ412, and Toroidh. Goatvargr adds to Nordvargr’s long list of collaborations across noise-industrial boundaries. O’Sullivan has a background of playing drums in bands, influenced by all styles, while his Goat project has been up to this point readily filed under noise – fast becoming recognized as one of America’s better noise acts.

Goatvargr delivers on all expectations. “Goatlord Rising”, the intro track, begins with dark ambience, adds a hypnotic beat, and finishes with a sharp splinter of noise. “Fix”, combines a down-tempo drum track with an almost hip-hop drum kick, some distorted voicing, plus a mass of heavy distortion everywhere else. “Realms of Goatvargr” starts with a rhythmic industrial pulse, declines into pure noise, and settles down with some soothing ambience. “Filthdaemon”, on the other hoof, is nonstop madness.

“Drunk on the Blood of the Goat” is maybe the most rhythmic and club friendly tracks, making it also one of the most listenable. “Beyond the Quorthorian Realms”, at close to thirteen minutes in length, is the most epic of the tracks. It breaks from the a-musical nature of the rest of the album with an intro that features an orchestral-like chorus of strings, but soon draws upon the doom of pulsing power electronics.

Music this intense always requires a response. Mine: feed the angry Goatvargr through sacrifice!

artist: Goatvargr
label: Cold Spring
details: cd, 7 tracks, 42 minutes, 2006 [CSR65CD]