Kolp – The Outside

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Review by Jason Guest

Temple of Torturous

Galloping with the pace of Guta late for an important meeting with Ördög, the opening minute of ‘There Was No Place To Hide’ is the stuff of fire and ice. War declared, the pace slows to that of doom and Kolp begin their arduous task of tearing the listener from the sanctuary of light and casting them deep into unending torture and immeasurable darkness. A solitary voice screaming torment appears mere seconds before the track gives way to the equally fierce, fuming and downcast ‘The Initial State’. Such an impressive beginning gives a clear indication of what to expect from The Outside: more of the traditional and experimental black metal that this Hungarian horde bestowed upon us with their debut, The Covered Pure Permanence. Where the jagged dirge of the vast and oceanic scale of ‘Drowning’ contrasts with the sharp torment, fiery riffs, persistent drumming, and tortured atmospherics of both ‘The Void and The Silence’, when it comes to ‘The Place’, the album begins to sound like a reiteration of what’s already befallen. Yet ‘Completion’ and ‘Interface Has Dissolved’ are both colossal, their melodies dramatic, their impact overwhelming, and the album rises again to what was promised in the opening tracks. And so, its scale grand, its tortures unyielding, it’s the title track that brings the album to a monolithic close as the leaden weight of the sky finally collapses under the burden of existence.

The barren and burning aesthetic of The Outside is as cold as it is all-consuming and the dynamics across the album make for a jarring black metal experience. While the solid structures of the tracks and the instrumentation are enough to drive the album, the vocals are made much more penetrating by their scarcity. With the tempos shifting between the rapid fire and the tortuously slow, the lines woven by the duo of Knot and Jim Jones are simple yet dense and labyrinthine, their weight crippling and their effect intense. Hypnotic, mesmerising and tortuous, The Outside makes for a fittingly uneasy black metal experience worthy of your consumption.

7.5 out of 10

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Track listing:                                                     

  1. There Was No Place To Hide
  2. The Initial State
  3. Drowning
  4. The Void And The Silence
  5. The Place
  6. Completion
  7. Interface Has Dissolved
  8. The Outside