24 June 2024
Livgone - Almost There

Livgone – Almost There

Release date:   22 March 2023
Label: Svart Records

Intro

Atmospheric dark rock trio Livgone sprang up out of both nowhere and everywhere. Hailing from three different countries, Aranguren (France), Kielbasa (Poland), and Svensson (Sweden) are a highly diverse group. Their music experience began as musicians, tour managers, and backliners for black metal greats such as Watain and Mayhem. Soon, Aranguren’s desire to express personal struggles led to the idea of a concept album. The results tell the story of a disorder slowly taking control over one’s life, leading to death. This story is told through their dark and raw debut album, Almost There.

The Album

The album opens with Walk to Derealization, a brief intro with gently whistling chimes. After this, Silverstone begins with a lightly tumbling guitar before exploding into near-frenetic riffs over heavily pounding drums. Both politely step back when Aranguren sings, only coming back in full force to match the energy of the vocals. At a full ten minutes, Hypoesthesia is the longest track and has the swaying rhythm and pensive emptiness to match. The guitars seemingly fight with the vocals, the drums barely holding them apart until a chasm opens, swallowing all three. Halfway through, Watching Them Feel lets the vocals take a backseat, guitar and drums working to create a sombre melody. When the vocals do interrupt from time to time, they are harshly shot down by both, almost violently so.

Dance So I Can makes use of an organ, Aranguren’s lighter vocals mirrored by relatively calm waves from the guitars. There is an interlude resembling an aging music box, which then turns into something quite dark when the instrumentalists return. Next, J’y suis presque opens with an anxiety-inducing aura produced by wavering guitars and clashing cymbals. It is only past the halfway mark when the spoken vocals, in French, make an appearance, serving to fill the rest of the track with an underlying dread. The final track, the title-referencing There, is a soft cacophony of industrial whirring and grinding. Piggybacking off of the apprehension built in the previous, this is a solid end to a gloomy, soul-numbing album.

A Final Word

Comparable to acts such as Messa and Emma Ruth Rundle, Livgone create an interesting soundscape that is heavy in more than one way. Aranguren’s vocals are peaceful yet contain a certain kind of anger or sadness that is barely noticeable. When laid over Kielbasa’s black metal guitarwork and Svensson’s doomy drums, it is a unique combination. Refined yet unpolished, Livgone have made an intriguing first entry to their catalogue whose story can be felt rather than heard.

Tracklist

  1. Walk to Derealization
  2. Silverstone
  3. Hypoesthesia
  4. Watching Them Feel
  5. Dance So I Can
  6. J’y suis presque
  7. There

Lineup:
Elise Aranguren – Vocals, keys
Michal Kielbasa – Guitars, bass, additional instruments
Emil Svensson – Drums

Links:

Bandcamp
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