Siaskel - Haruwen AirenVery few things impress me more than a band that knows how to incorporate ideas from their native land or language into their music. Take Orphaned Land‘s beautiful incorporation of Middle-Eastern motifs in their message of unity, for example. I’m a sucker for this kind of sound. Chile’s Siaskel utilizes a mix of Spanish and Ona, a language of the indigenous Selk’nam people of the Patagonian region of Argentina and Chile, as a lyrical addition to their vicious blend of black and death metal. On their second album, Haruwen AirenSiaskel goes for the throat and refuses to let go.

Indigenous chanting and tribal drums open up “Hechuknhaiyin Yecna Shuaken Chima,” and those chants are the only moment of respite found on Haruwen Airen, as it’s a tremolo-laden blast-fest from that point forward. If you love Dissection but wish that they not only did away with the classical guitar lines but also tried to outrun Morbid Angel in the fast-and-crazy department, you will get a kick out of this album. Drummer Sinn Hayek blasts like a man possessed by a combination of demons, spirits, rage, and the strongest of black coffee. His drumming has a range of “Fast” to “What?!” as his ridiculous blasts and fills turn songs like “Só’ón Hás-Kan” and “Mai-ich” into windmill-inducing homages to the gods. Gorrge’s guttural howls and venomous rasps match Hayek’s intensity, roaring and shrieking with murderous intent.

But the clear focal point goes to the riffing and melodic runs of guitarists Ma’hai Jippen and Oblimink. Album highlight “Hais” features an impressive tremolo melody by Jippen, with her channeling the late Jon Nödveidt, but adding a bizarre, almost spacey twist to it. Oblimink himself adds a rhythmic harmony to it, creating a spiritual transcendence to the insanity. Their command of harmony, even amidst the chaos, transforms an old sound into something strange, savage, and unique.

Siaskel 2016
Haruwen Airen
does possess some strikes against it. The production mushes everything together, with the drums mixed too high for my liking, and K’hmal Jauke’s bass buried deep. Also, with the album constantly at a high clip tempo-wise, the feeling of deja vu does set in after a while. But if you’re hungering for something brutal and unrelenting, yet different enough to set itself apart from the corpse-painted masses, hunt Haruwen Airen down.

Tracks to Check Out: “Hechuknhaiyin Yecna Shuaken Chima,” “Só’ón Hás-Kan,” and “Hais” and “Mai-ich”

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  • SlapDatAss

    For whatever reason, these guys’ names remind me of the Uruk commanders I had to take out in Shadow of Mordor. What a great game that was and what a great discovery this is! Thanks Grymm!

    • Andrew Rowland


  • blighty

    Good review, and I am enjoying this album. Not to be pedantic, but Nile are from South Carolina, not Egypt though lol.

    • herrschobel

      aaaaahaaaaand nobody was saying that. The use of Egyptian scales doesn´t make you Egyptian, right ? though the first paragraph might be misleading…

      • Oscar Albretsen

        Sounded to me like he was saying they’re from Egypt. “A band that knows how to incorperate ideas from their native land or language into their music.”

        • Grymm

          Yeah, that meant to mean that they incorporated ideas from Egyptian musical nodes and instrumentation, and not “HEY, Nile are Egyptian!” I dun goofed on that one.

          Sorry about that.

    • madhare

      Yeah that was my first thought too. Happens when a writer tries to be witty but is too busy (or something) to carry it out properly. So just ends up digging himself into a pit. :D

      • Grymm

        Nah, it’s called, “I’m pulling mad shifts at work, and I’m usually better at checking things like this in my off-time.”

        Sorry about that!

    • Grymm


      Sorry about that, and thank you for pointing that out.

      • I know how I missed it.. 12euros for a digital album is a bit expensive… I was ready to buy it straight at a “regular” price…

        • Yeah, Paul Wardingham has three albums that I’m ready to throw money at, but the digital editions are retailing at $12 each. It is wrong of me to balk at that kind of pricing?

          • I would pay 12$ for physical copy. Will wait for this one to have a price dropping.

      • Oh no big deal!

  • Andrew Rowland

    After watching Kubo and the Two Strings, I demand a samisen to be in all metal

    • Grymm

      I would kill to hear tech-death (aka Nile or Oni/Tzun Tzu (AUS)) with some shamisen.

  • Monsterth Goatom

    Thanks, Grymm. Sounds great.

    Nice cover art. I wonder if those figures have any special meaning. I see an Alien-like figure, a pointy-head guy wearing what seems to be a tree trunk, and Mr. Hammerhead/Loghead. I like the guy looking at us: “Can you believe this shit?”

  • sir_c

    Ferocious and intense. That’s how we like it

  • OzanCan

    Man, this is fucked up…in a most brutal, metal way m/ FTW!