Written by Barlovv
>Morkera – Entangled Excavations
>Released June 6, 2022
Wake up my muse, my divine assistant, rewrite my memory and tailor my immortal mind.
Slay the given empire and open your journey through the coward’s vault.
I will replay with grieved soul and eyes that shine brighter than stars
So begins the debut album from anonymous Croatian black metal outfit Morkera. You read that right, a completely anonymous group that you’re not going to be able to look up on any social media exists currently in 2022. Kind of a wild thing, but obviously completely irrelevant to the substance of this review. If anything it should serve as a reminder that you can do cool shit without a Twitter account.
Besides being a contender for “Best Album Artwork of 2022”, Morkera absolutely fucking blasts itself into your ears from moment one, and doesn’t let up. The drumming stand out in particular, a relentless and brutal hammering that manages to show off both the drummer’s skill and the band’s bonafides as a black metal group to keep your eyes on. While there is some great instrumental talent on display, and some fantastic walls of sound, I couldn’t in good conscience not mention how into the drumming on this album that I am.
There is a real unexpected beauty coming from Morkera on the lyrical front, you see a bit of what I’m talking about in the opening lines that I’ve already mentioned, but that carries through the entire album. Even in dealing with incredibly dark subjects, there is a beauty in the descriptions as written, take this passage from “Deserted Denial”
Not only do waves of self-destruction stay uncouth but they pour themselves into the marsh.
And wistful coils around hands sweeten the air gladdened by the sun.
Obsolete flies from those who are bearing the filthy throats in the mire.
It’s just a really beautifully written album, that feels more poetic than I might associate with the genre. That’s not a criticism of the genre at large, it just one of those things that stands out to me while I’m reading the lyrics to Entangled Excavations. Particularly for a band coming from Croatia, a negligible distance from Ukraine, an ability to see a kind of horrible beauty in such a dire world situation is kind of amazing.
The poetic nature of the lyrics lends itself to the vocals as well, there is almost a black metal version of spoken word happening hear, with a droning brutal growl that almost feels at odds with the instruments but not in a way that I could describe as negative. You’ve also got an excellent showcase of the band’s musical chops with the final two tracks on the album being completely instrumental.
The Bottom Line
The album is genuinely a great one and, depending on when you’re reading this, you should absolutely go and show them some support. Throw them some cash and make sure they’re able to release a follow up of some kind.