It has to be said that the band name alone sparked intrigue and anticipation in thoughts but once the first strains of sonic conspiracy from Conjuro Nuclear’s self-titled album wrapped its charms around ears and senses, that interest soon bred a hunger. The predominantly instrumental release is a blistering and caustically charming fusion of post punk and black metal which manages to simultaneously sound strikingly unique yet recognisable in its creative drama. It is a masterfully compelling proposition which maybe does not consistently enough set a blaze in the passions but certainly owns the imagination from start to finish for a just as potent success.
Formed in 2012 and hailing from Barcelona, Conjuro Nuclear is the solo project of Emesis. Originally a duo, the project released Luna llena y radiación (Full moon and radiation) last year to strong responses. Now Emesis alone, the band has unleashed its sophomore encounter, a release easy to suspect and expect to have the potency to push Conjuro Nuclear into the spotlight of a much wider attention. Consisting of eleven tracks which are like individual episodes in a united series of events yet not necessarily within a continuous soundscape, the album is a riveting and bewitching antagonist for senses and thoughts.
The title track is the first adventure to embrace the listener and immediately its dark noir breath is an irresistible lure for ears and imagination. Keys and beats link to build a shady atmosphere which the sonic suggestiveness of the guitar lights up with acidic coaxing. The track takes little time in building scenery of danger and unpredictable drama, its creative invention and sounds the rich colour to its eventful canvas. The track has the dark tones of an intrusive mystery and the exotic hues of a sci-fi emprise, and easily lures thought and emotions to its expressive and inescapable bosom. Production, as it is across the whole album, has a muggy/ sultry come oppressive feel which only adds to the intensive weight and texture of the sounds, which in turn thickens the thoroughly absorbing incitement.
The following Oscura lisergia is of similar breeding, a repetitive lone groove stealing the passions as a tempest brews and squalls around its infectious bait. Initially thoughts of eighties bands like Crispy Ambulance and Leitmotiv come to the fore, the prime sonic hook reminiscent of that era but the track is soon flushing a black metal causticity across the senses which smothers but does not extinguish that ever virulent enticement. It is a brilliant slice of hostile beauty which like its predecessor sets the album on the highest plateau immediately. Its lofty success is then matched by the elegant beauty of Atomización. Keys float across and call emotions from its first spatial breath, courting their instincts with a haunted but crystalline grace which again urges the imagination to cast its own designs.
The next up Divinorum is borne of a more malicious intent, its blackened storm of sonic abrasing and severe ambience a searing black metal animosity. Through it though, a spine of sonic tempting casts a contagious line, its sharp twang and citric flavour carrying reminiscent of a The Jesus and Mary Chain like lure. Raw insidiously spawned vocals make their most forceful appearance on the album too though they are submerged within the corrosive wash of the song to lack real clarity. The track broils ears with its ravenous presence and erosive breath, leaving them smarting intensively, though the psych rock/darkwave tenacity of Intoxicación brings an initial soothing before unveiling its own irrepressible and infectious toxicity of sound and energy. Though neither track matches the heights of the first few songs, each leaves an exhausted pleasure and appetite in their wake which the gripping Visiones tóxicas exploits further through its darkly lit melodies and even more damaging sonic rabidity. From the somewhat clearer atmospheres of the first few songs, the album definitely takes a blacker and voraciously shadowed turn across this stretch of tracks; severe corrosive storms the core violation though they always come littered with hooks and post punk grooves which flirt continuously.
Coros radiactivos crafts a respite to the tempestuous flow of the album at this point, its crystal honed melodies and reflectively colourful keys simply tantalising. Its magnetic beauty is taken and laid into a more fiery rock embracing setting in Bosque de cráneos, the combination a constantly expanding and growing crescendo of passion and vigorous intensity. Elements of Sisters Of Mercy and The Mission seep into the persistently bubbling mixture, spicing up an increasingly darkening and imposing landscape of sound and imagination. It is a thrilling encounter but soon left short by the outstanding punk driven abrasion of Desechos tóxicos. Binding hardcore and old school punk inhospitality with black metal rancor and sonic venom, the track simply ignites ears and passions, especially when not for the first time on the album, a surf rock enticing shows its seduction.
The album is completed by the melodic poetry of Ecos de la noche, keys and emotional hues again painting a piece of music which immerses senses and emotions with beauty and invention, and lastly the nocturnal maliciousness of Sólo para locos. Using lyrics from The Steppenwolf, the track is a deathly black metal driven scavenging of senses and feelings, which again crawls over the psyche with a sonic toxin of post metal which has the raw causticity of sound and emotion of a band like Artery.
Conjuro Nuclear has created a release which is ridiculously compelling and scintillating. Certainly there are moments where tracks without an intensive attention merge into each other’s arms and the rhythmic side of the album does not impose anywhere as much as you would like and expect, but they cannot stop it being one riveting proposition. Conjuro Nuclear is a project to only get excited about.
Conjuro Nuclear is available as a name your price download @ http://conjuronuclear.bandcamp.com/album/conjuro-nuclear-2014
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