Havohej - _Kembatinan Premaster_
(Hells Headbangers, 2009)
by: Alexandra Erickson (7 out of 10)
Bleak, foreboding, oppressive and suffocating in the vast emptiness that he's become famous for... Paul Ledney is back at it with Havohej. He's been on the front lines of experimental black metal since it first gained its foothold on those looking for more in a world of redundancy and blasphemy. Churning along through eight tracks, _Kembatinan Premaster_ is not for most of you. Experimental black metal isn't a buzz phrase meaning the grimmest new sub-genre you've never heard of but claim to for grim points. And when I say experimental, I don't mean Enslaved or Nachtmystium. No, experimental black metal is just that... new territory. Drowning in drone and tones that you feel, not hear. The pulsating, black visceral center of this album is the marriage of his roiling drums and his gravelly, tortured vocals.

If you know Profanatica, the likelihood that you've heard of Havohej is high. But, just because you know Profanatica does not automatically put you at a predisposition for liking Havohej. But for the niche that Ledney has found, he's a giant amongst men. Tinny tones laden over loops of seeming cacophonies, atmosphere is everything. Music you get lost in, but that you think for eons about without realizing it. Tones above our range of hearing, that we feel, not hear in the traditional sense. For what it is, this album hits the nail on the head. Noisy, thought provoking, but still with definite musicianship. If you're starved for something new, and completely different, _Kembatinan Premaster_ is a lovely place to start. If you acquire a taste for what Ledney does, I urge you to go backwards through his Havohej discography and grab any copies of his 7"s, they showcase his abilities with even greater precision and less unsettling ultrasonic noises.

Contact: http://www.myspace.com/havohejofficial

(article published 5/7/2009)

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