Gorgoroth Live in Hilversum ’96

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gorgorothlivehilversum96The present is a live presentation by Gorgoroth poorly recorded in 1996 in Hilversum. The six songs contained here are selected from Pentagram and Antichrist, arguably the two best releases by this band, whom soon after lost their touch for obscurity and moved on to raw crudeness without sensitivity and then towards completely sterile technical performance. This is a snapshot of a golden era, of the music even if not the people, in which black metal was magickal, engulfing and sincere in a bare-bones manner.

Many will find the quality of the recording so poor that they will wish to pass on it; many would argue if there is any good reason to listen to such an unclear and distorted recording if one can simply listen to the first two albums, whose production is already raw enough but with a nice, clear sound to go with it. One could simply answer saying that they are two different experiences to appreciate different aspects or to contemplate them from different vantage points.

The decay and death in the sound is so pervasive and overbearing that the recordings are indeed blurred, indeed going beyond conceptions of delightful nekro sound. A good reason, however, to listen to a recording such as this is that it forces the listener to actually listen with all his intent and attention; it is as if the listener had to earn the privilege of the the music. Furthermore, the conditions make it so that the live recording must be listened to in a quiet environment, and it needs concentrated attention.

What ends up happening is that only the overarching gestures, broadest textural changes and structural progressions are reflected in this recording, while the details are certainly obfuscated to a degree that they are rendered out of the question for study. He who would properly peruse and thus appreciate this record it to a full and ecstatic experience need tune in to the motions of the music as if to the rhythms of an ocean’s tide under the ravenous moon.

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