on 15 February 2008
Every once in a while you stumble across an album that redefines music as you know it. Being a fan of both avant-garde electronica and black metal it almost seem that KTL is a band designed for melding these seemingly disparate musical genres. KTL started as a musical project for a theater piece called Kindertotenlieder (hence the name KTL) by Giselle Viennes and Dennis Cooper, and now the music made for the piece has been released on both cd and vinyl. The musicians behind KTL is Peter Rehnberg (PITA) and Stephen O'Malley (Sunn 0))), Khanate, Burning Witch) and despite coming from different musical backgrounds they effortlessly create something unique and wondeful.
The album starts off with the 25-minute piece "Estranged" which basically plays like a slow-burning, brooding, foreboding collection of sounds that builds and builds. You almost feel like that you are descending into complete and utter darkness fearing what lies ahead. When the track is over you really have arrived in purgatory as the Forest Floor suite begins with Forest Floor 1. Throughout the four movements of the Forest Floor suite O'Malley's black metal guitar stylings and droning monolith-riffs clash violently with Rehnberg's screeching and searing electronics. Make no mistake, this is extreme music as its best and most brutal, but it does however not lack concistency and a strange sort of beauty. Each movement of the Forest Floor suite is almost 8-10 minutes each and when everything is over we continue onwards to the last track which is the serene but dark piece called "Snow". This piece perfectly bookends the album since we return to the quiet, yet disturbing, stylings of
To sum it all up I have to say that KTL has made a modern classic of extreme music that should appeal to both electro-heads and die hard black metal-fans alike. I also have to mention that the KTL project lives on and has released a second album KTL2, an ep KTL3, and a live album KTL Live in Krems which all are excellent. So if you like the first album be quick to pick up the rest. Enjoy!