Paydretz are a new France-based black metal act featuring key members of Himinbjorg, Grylle, Vehemence, Hanternoz, Skyforger and Cruachan. Based in western France, the multi-national yet French focused outfit will center the lyrical topic on the War in the Vendée, a three-year counterrevolution during the French Revolution. Musically, Paydretz fuse caustic black metal with the harmonies of folk music. In many ways, the music housed in Paydretz’s debut album, Chroniques de l’Insurrection (Antiq), could be heard as a way point between French stalwarts Himinbjorg, Irish lads Cruachan, and Latvian legends Skyforger, but emboldened by French-language narration, harsh black metal motifs, and scene-setting theatrics.
Say Paydretz: “‘Colonnes Infernales’ is the nickname self given by storm troops during the Vendée wars. The purpose was to cross the region and burn, pillage, rape and devastate the inland where the peasant insurgees sought refuge and refilled their energy and motivation. (These holidays from the war time to take care of families and lands — and to rest — was called ‘changing the shirt’ by peasants). The purpose was to burn the land to the ground: ‘some of them may be on our side, but we cannot take the chance to spare any.’
From January to May 1794, 12 army columns crossed the land, killing literally every one they would find (children, pregnant women) and also animals. 50,000 people died from it, not counting the numerous diseases, deaths and suicides due to unusual amount of war rape. The horror is also those incendiary columns took place after the great battle in which the insurgent army was crushed.
The time of the Infernal Columns is literally the darkest of the Vendée Wars and the epitome of violence against the insurgents. In the album, it is placed in the middle of this great historical fresco as it was in history: a turning point in which the violence brought despair to the insurgent army. The beginning of a bend in the rebels’ will.”
Join the insurgency or march with death in your hands with the Infernal Columns… the choice is yours! Paydretz’s “Colonnes Infernales” is your soundtrack.