After garnering some critical acclaim with their first album of sludgy black metal, Regarde les Hommes Tomber (« Watch men falls » in english) is back without their original singer, U.W. from Otargos and a second album that’s blacker than sludgier. Despite the praise and acclaim received by their self-titled debut, the muddy production and the typical postcore riffing left me wanting something more, even if their band name was pretty cool.
Now back with Exile, the french men can show that France is one of the best country for black metal, alongside bread and cooking things that nobody wants to eat (like frogs or snails, you’re seriously missing out on some great food) The riffing is now more oriented towards black metal with some hints towards Xasthur or Altar of Plagues. However, the band relies mostly on a sludgier backbone to move, with still some black beats here and there (A sheep among the wolves).
Even if the rhythm section is quite obviously influenced by AmenRa, for the slower parts, moving to a slower crawl benefits the darker riffing and makes the songs more dynamic. Even after almost a decade of postcore influenced black metal (Altar of Plagues‘s demo came out in 2006), the mixing of both genres still offers some nice surprising such as this one. A song like Embrace the flames might not sound original in writing but when played with such clear but heavy production, it sounds glorious.
Regarde les Hommes Tomber embraces their black metal influence to create a darker sort of modern sludge influenced as much by AmenRa than by Altar of Plagues but a more metallic edge. Exile is a much more creative and fulfilling listening experience than their debut and it should be celebrated for this success. A stronger and more impressive follow up that promises some powerful shows.