VÖLUR have released a video of the first single taken from their forthcoming full-length “Death Cult“, which has been slated for release on November 13th. The track and video of ‘Inviolate Grove’ tie in with the album’s concept that is loosely based on a note by the antique Roman historiographer Tacitus about a ritual of human sacrifice in his book “Germania”. ‘Inviolate Grove’ has been exclusively premiered by official media partner Metal Hammer (UK) at the link below.
VÖLUR comment: “This is the first single, ‘Inviolate Grove’ taken from our forthcoming album ‘Death Cult’, which will be released on Friday 13th in November”, says vocalist Lucas Gadke. “We made the video in collaboration with Sarah Legault, who supplied us with some dark and mysterious footage and Tim O’Reilly. This track, like the other three songs on ‘Death Cult’, is a variation on a theme, which is inspired by a Germanic ritual that the Roman author Tacitus described. Imagine entering a circle of trees. A priest approaches a veiled idol. The full moon rises, and the priest leads the idol to the water. In the video we see a living idol and the priest, in a different time yet still the same.”
Music: Inviolate Grove by Völur (Lucas Gadke, Justin Ruppel, Laura C. Bates)
Lyrics: Lucas Gadke
Direction and Cinematography: Sarah Legault
Studio Footage, Lighting and Cinematography: SoundStill Production
Man with violin: Art Pratten
Woman in cornfield: Kat Krawczuk
Man in car: Adam Urbach
Makeup: JLB Beauty
Hair: Jezzi Rogers
Wardrobe: Nidia Martinez
Additional makeup: Sarah Legault
Band footage filmed at Boxcar Sound Recording in Hamilton, Ontario, additional footage filmed in London, Ontario, Canada.
1. Inviolate Grove
2. Dead Moon
3. Freyjan Death Cult
4. Reverend Queen
To the casual listener, VÖLUR might ‘just’ appear to write great doom songs with an avant-garde approach using elements from folk, classical music and free jazz. Those delving deeper into “Death Cult” will discover a singular dark world where ancient ritual becomes modern angst, a violin has replaced all guitars, and a multitude of fascinating lyrical and musical discoveries awaits.
The third full-length of the Canadian trio from Toronto was partly inspired by a suggestion of human sacrifice that Tacitus relates in his book “Germania”. According to the Roman historiographer, the Germanic tribes of the Baltic Sea worshipped the earth goddess Nerthus by a mysterious ritual that ended with the drowning of four slaves. “I came to the realisation that this sacrifice to some never answering deity is a repeating cycle of people doing something that does nothing to solve real problems and only leaves dead people behind”, explains VÖLUR vocalist and bass player Lucas Gadke. “This makes ‘Death Cult’ probably the closest thing to a political album we will ever come up with. It is basically a lament for all the destruction, the burning, and gnawing away of this planet’s natural environment. Again, humankind appears to be stuck in a futile vicious cycle until it is too late.”
The theme of a lament is running through the musical side of “Death Cult”, which is denoted by outbursts of anger, moments of melancholy, and audible despair. Although VÖLUR clearly fit into the doom metal mould, they connect to a far broader soundscape. Folk or traditional music playing an important role as exemplified by the violin replacing guitars, but the Canadians are equally at home in contemporary genres.
While staying true to the folk doom style that the trio introduced with their debut album “Disir” (2014) and expanded on the sophomore full-length “Ancestors” (2017), the third album witnesses VÖLUR honing their craft. “Death Cult” is characterised by a tightening of compositions and a complete amalgamation of the separate stylistic influences into one cohesive musical experience that still offers a broad range and a host of details waiting to be discovered.
VÖLUR smash the hollow idols on whose altars the merciless priests of capital and industry sacrifice our planet with “Death Cult” – a sinister lament born from folk, modern classical music and a heavy dose of doom metal.
Lucas Gadke – bass, vocals
Laura C. Bates – electric violin, vocals
Justin Ruppel – drums