I had to do a little bit of a dig to find out more about Corps Fleur (the band) as the info that came in with the promo was a little scant. They’re a four-piece from the Midlands, they play DSBM (and yes, I misread that the first time) and this self-titled release is their first full EP. DSBM is depressive/suicidal black metal so do be aware, as the band were kind enough to highlight in their email, that the lyrical content could be disturbing or possible even triggering to some people.
One definition of DSBM that I found reads:
…a sub-genre of black metal which features an overall monotonous sound, repetitive and frequently droning guitars, apathetic drums, occasional minimalistic keyboards and atmospheric ambient passages.
Corps Fleur could be used as a musical definition of this, but I’d add that they’ve also included some great melodic guitar work as well. That’s what sells this whole EP to me. It’s not just the atmospheric sections where the guitars lilt. “Sea of Trees”, for example has them backing the heavier part of the track.
Vocals are standard harsh/screamed black metal variety, and I have no idea how someone can sing like this without turning their throat into something resembling bloody sandpaper. Glancing through the lyrics sheet really opens your eyes to the darkness that the singer has been through – apparently all of the words on this album come from his own personal experience. To say that some of them are hard-hitting would be an understatement. There is a mixture of the more symbolic (“Arboreal”) and the kick-to-the-teeth, no holding back (“Solace”). This is powerful stuff.
They’ve been drip-feeding some of the songs via facebook to their fan-base already, but the whole collection really is something impressive. The multiple layers in each song have been handled and mixed very well indeed. For a debut release, this is… well, honestly it’s brilliant. It’s not a style of music I would normally go for, but that’s the joy of getting all these review submissions, the chance to dip your toes in and find something new. Corps Fleur definitely isn’t a “review and ditch” title, I will be listening to it again.
Corps Fleur is out on September 5th