I always get a little worried when a group/band/gathering of entities feels the need to tell us they are “shrouded in mystery” or esoteric. Shouldn’t such things speak for themselves, after all? Shouldn’t the darkness, the obscured lure the listener in? Even more is the concern when it seems the duo of ?? and ?? have been tutored from a young age in the ways of black metal by some sort of occultic Svengali, so as to execute all aspects of their art “correctly”.

It’s not often I preview an album by watching a video, but ‘Lucifer Kalder’ was helpful, as through its unintentional humor, I was introduced to Bowler Hat and Hoodie. Grim and frostbitten visages obscured, it’s really all I have to go on, and so shall the duo remain. Four minutes into opener the title track, ‘Skyggespil’, and I was already bored to tears, such was the half-arsed, lazy assault upon my senses. While moments of ‘Uhygge’ are passable, it’s only because those moments are so very, very reminiscent of their fledgling forefathers two decades prior, but with zero passion involved, zero sense of the risk. Near the end of the tune, lo and behold, something catches the ear, a melodic, somewhat forlorn element I’d actually like to see ANGSTSKRIG explore further.

Sadly, this is not to be, as the aforementioned ‘Lucifer Kalder’ yawns, barely lifting its tired head, dumbed down riffs that couldn’t hook a fish if they were literally performing inside it. Watch the video to see Bowler Hat and Hoodie displaying their blackness in various clearly kvlt locations, and carrying around their groceries in burlap sacks. ‘Slæbt Gennem Sølet’ tries to doom the blackness up a bit, but comes off sounding like grunge mixed with the offspring of a RAMMSTEIN ballad and KHOLD.

Accuse me of pre-judging if you want, based on a bio and single video, and you may be right in one sense. In the one that matters, though, the finished product bears me out. Sorry, Bowler Hat and Hoodie. You are a false. Don’t entry. Black metal is not for you. But you get 1 point still, as I enjoy fancy head-coverings.
Review By: Lord “Leave The Hall” Randall

Despotz Records
1 / 6