After 9 years and 3 full lengths, it’s safe to conclude that the London-based avant-garde black metal/doom quartet Lychgate are a singular band, utterly peerless in their genre. While that’s in part because Lychgate sound nothing like any other band, past or current, the group also continuously pushes themselves into more challenging territories, while we, their listeners, are always eager to follow.
Now two years since the release of their phenomenal third album, The Contagion in Nine Steps, Lychgate are back with a 4-song EP titled Also sprach Futura. Recorded, mixed, and mastered by vocalist/guitarist Greg Chandler at the famous Priory Recording Studios, Also sprach Futura in a way represents Lychgate’s vision of the world to come. Additionally, the cover art painting, the illustrations, as well as the design and layout for Also sprach Futura were handled by Khaos Diktator Design.
According to guitarist/organist/mellotronist/vocalist Vortigern: Also sprach Futura “in some ways returns to elements of the ‘An Antidote…’ album, while exploring new territory. It is generally quicker paced and direct, as well as more guitar/riff-based and technically refined than before.”
He continues: “Thematically [Also sprach Futura] is in some ways inspired by the novel and film Metropolis (1925/1927); especially the first track, themed on the awakening of ‘Futura’ (the name of the Maschinenmensch in Metropolis). The second track concerns Stanisław Lem’s work ‘Golem XIV’ on the machine which obtains consciousness and exceeds the intelligence of humans. The third track is on Pygmalion’s sculpture of the ideal human, which is later bestowed life, as in Ovid’s Metamorphoses. The EP’s final track ends on the concept of human self-destruction via the ideal human/simulacrum.”
Vortigern says have recorded and released an EP instead of another full length because they “wanted to break the discography up slightly, without going straight ahead with an album.” He continues: “It also gives people a taster of what we are working on and clues about the direction we are taking. As with every release, some stylistic traits get carried forward. The EP has helped us think clearly about how to develop our next album – an album which will be, in our opinion at least, our best work yet.”
Concerning the track “Incarnate,” Vortigern says: “It should be borne in mind that it is an introduction track, which leads into the subsequent track ‘Progeny of the Singularity’. It demonstrates some of Lychgate’s stylistic traits: a juxtaposition of dissonances and more regular/tonal features, with the development of a repeating motif. This track is distinctly more modern sounding than some of the band’s previous work and was aimed to musically reflect the track’s lyrical concept, mentioned above. It should nevertheless (later) be heard within the context of the whole release.”
Get Lychgate’s new EP on digipack MCD, 10” vinyl, special edition 10″ vinyl, and all digital platforms via Debemur Morti Productions on March 13th.