Sektarism - La Mort de L'InfideleAs anyone who knows me well enough can attest, I function in strange ways. I enjoy my iced coffee in the wintertime. In the summertime, though, when everyone is either at the beach or cruising down the highway of their choice, I prefer to shutter myself in my house, grab a beer, and listen to either Kyuss or funeral doom. Strange, I know, but there’s something to be said about taking it easy on days where it’s overly sunny and hot as balls outside. So imagine my delight when I discovered La Mort de L’Infidele by France’s Sektarism in the promo bin, just waiting for me to engage in enough summertime sadness to make Lana Del Ray blush. And imagine my actual sadness when I discovered that La Mort wasn’t at all funeral doom, sad, or even good.

But it sure starts promisingly enough. Opener “O Seigneur” begins with low-mixed ambient hand drums, a single bass note, and vocalist Eklezjas’Tik Berzerk talking in French. It occurred to me just two minutes into the song that I possess a great disadvantage in that I barely understand a lick of French. Wouldn’t you know it, the entire album is in French. Not a bad thing, as I enjoy hearing other languages and that alone doesn’t deter me from an album’s enjoyment. What does deter me from an album’s enjoyment is a distinct lack of hook or atmosphere, and wouldn’t you know it, La Mort stumbles greatly. A few minutes of droning bass and Berzerk ranting and yelling is manageable. A full twelve minutes of this is sheer overkill. Thankfully, some decently placed ambiance by guitarist Messiatanik Armrek provides the song’s (and ultimately album’s) only build-up, saving the song from complete, utter boredom.

Not quite hating myself fully yet, I plow through the other two songs, totaling roughly 52 minutes. Second track “Brûle L’Hérétique” is the closest to anything resembling actual metal on the entire album, sounding a bit like a non-industrial Godflesh, until the song takes a severe detour into droning ambient territory, with Berzerk ranting, screaming, and howling for a good solid fifteen minutes over the same drum pattern and one-note bass riffs. But nothing compares to the absolute torture that is closer “Conscience, Révolte, Perte du Moi,” which happens to contain not one single saving grace in all of the song’s 32 minutes of droning, screaming, feedback, chanting, and simplistic drum patterns over single-note riffs.

The only upside is the sound itself is mixed well enough. The hand drums are clear, the bass feels full, and the guitars howl and screech without too much noise. All of this becomes a moot point when the music itself isn’t enjoyable. It aims to bludgeon you with volume like SunnO))), drive you paranoid like Bethlehem, and feel the weight of impending loss like Funeral, but manages to succeed at none of the above. While I get what Sektarism are trying to accomplish, there has to be some kind of pull for the listener to be engaged, and other than the small build-up in “O Seigneur,” none exists. Not once did I feel sad, scared, or punch-drunk from all the atmosphere. I felt a great deal of annoyance, though, so congrats if that was the intent.1

In short, La Mort de L’Infidele is such a successful exercise in pretentiousness that I’m surprised Pitchfork and Wayne Coyne aren’t in on this already. If you want to annoy yourself for roughly 64 minutes, then, by all means, have at it. I can’t think of a better album to supplement your bellybutton-gazing. Otherwise, there are far better uses for your time and money. Avoid this to your heart’s content.


Rating: 0.5/5.0
DR: 7 | Format Reviewed: 256 kbps mp3
Label: Zanjeer Zani Productions
Websites: sektarism.bandcamp.com | facebook.com/sektarism
Releases Worldwide: May 19th, 2017

Show 1 footnote

  1. Even more annoying is the lack of a preview track for you folks. Only samples exist. Le boo.

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  • Reese Burns

    I speak French relatively well. Trust me, you’re not missing much in the way of thought-provoking lyrics. I actually heard a bit of this album a while back, I wasn’t impressed then, and I’m not impressed now. Edit: good jab at Pitchfork, though. That site gets on my wick.

  • André Snyde Lopes

    -0.5 for use of Old English Text MT for a grand total equal to the number of fucks I give about this record.

    • Brutalist_Receptacle

      HA HA. YOU GIVE -0.5 FUCKS ABOUT THIS RECORD

    • Eli Valcik

      Hey, Bathory uses that same text. WATCH IT! BUT yeah -0.5 Fucks given here too.

      • sir_c

        Once there was a time a mustache and chest hair was sexy. The same regarding gothic fonts.
        Still not as bad as comic sans or papyrus though #Lemmy

        • Grymm

          Or Bleeding Cowboys font.

          Honestly… I want a band to have their entire logo be Wingdings.

          Make it happen, metal universe. Make. It. HAPPEN.

          • sir_c

            try to google some witch house music…
            For example †▼BF▼CK – †HΣ F▲LL

  • Zach Ward

    Funeral Doom is perhaps my favorite genre of metal, so when I saw the post on Facebook for this review and it mentioned the lovely/depressing funeral doom genre i got pretty darn excited, only to read the review and lose all hope and excitement. Welp, back to Ahab and Mournful Congregation.

    • foreverAlfon

      You like Ahab? I would never have guessed it! jk aside which album do you prefer, The Boats of the Glen Carrig or The Call Of The Wretched Sea?

      • Zach Ward

        I like The Boats of the Glen Carrig more, but not my much. It’s my fav Ahab album while Call of the wretched sea and the divinity of oceans I feel are about the same. The giant is easily my least favorite although Further South is one if my favorite songs by anyone. I’m a little infatuated by em lol.

        • Reese Burns

          Glen Carig was the right answer to that question. ;)

    • Wes Allen

      Any other funeral doom you recommend? I’m always on the lookout for more.

      • Zach Ward

        Sure thing dewd. Ahab, (The Best+), Before the Rain, Depressed Mode, dismbowelment, Doom:Vs(+), Ea, Esoteric, Evoken, The Fall of Every Season(From Below is amazing +), Forest of Shadows, Funeral(+), The Howling Void, Lethian Dreams, Lycus, Monolithe, Mournful Congregation(+), Mourning Beloveth, Oceanwake, Remembrance, Saturnus(Not really a fan, but they’re received pretty positively), Septic Mind, Shape of Despair(+), Skepticism(+), Thergothon, Tyranny, and Wine From Tears. Not all of these are strictly Funeral Doom but most are relatively close. I put a + near the ones I highly recommend. Cheers

        • sir_c

          Disembowelment / Evoken +many

        • Wes Allen

          This ought to keep me busy for a bit. Thanks for the suggestions, man.

          • Reese Burns

            I would add Who Dies in Siberian Slush and Bell Witch(+) to that list as well!

          • Zach Ward

            Also (3 days later…) I just remembered Corrupted. Theyre a + too.

          • Wes Allen

            Corrupted may be my favorite doom band. I commend your taste.

    • Grymm

      The world NEEDS more Mournful Congregation.

      • Zach Ward

        YES!!! YES and more YESS!!! They’re almost too good. Also spotify needs them as well. 1 album by them is painful. Here I am bitching about spotify again.. joy

  • Monsterth Goatom

    Hey, is that Tom of Fishland?

    • Grymm

      If it was, it would look a little… different.

  • rumour_control

    Superb wordsmithery. Kudos.

  • Monsterth Goatom

    Way back when, I used to sequester myself in the basement during the heat of Summer listening to the CBC’s Saturday Afternoon at the Opera. There was something especially powerful about listening to live performances from the great houses of Europe in a cold, dark room at such times (especially Wagner), when I was “supposed” to be outside enjoying the season.

    Of course, that’s also why I never had any girlfriends.

    • Iliast

      This is definitely not the opera…

  • Martin Knap

    Nice.

  • Brent Johnson

    I was feeling kind of bad for you that you listened all the way through this and then I saw the picture, so now, I don’t feel bad for you at all.

  • sir_c

    Ha ha I see the Angry Metrosexual Pelican in the band pic.

  • “Finally”, a full stream is available on CVLT Nation. I’ll post the link in a separate comment, as the bureaucratic gears in the autocracy of AMG is slow as hell at filtering things through their intensive censorship.

  • h_f_m

    LOL