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Ives > Burial of the Modernized Soulless > Reviews > Noktorn
Ives - Burial of the Modernized Soulless

punk's not dead, just buried - 70%

Noktorn, January 6th, 2011

The brainchild of one of the more prolific members of the Jacksonville metal scene, Ives is a band which blends primitive anarcho-punk with black metal- Bone Awl is clearly an extensive influence, but Ives isn't as starkly minimal and noisy as that band and definitely has personality of their own. Their debut demo, 'Burial Of The Modernized Soulless', is an unrefined but certainly promising slab of black/punk which manages to invert many of the tropes of such a style while still staying true to the roots of its respective genres.

I often feel that bands like this are nothing more than punk with shrieked vocals, but Ives definitely makes the black metal a significant player, featuring blast beats, a vicious vocal performance, and a definitely black metal production style. The punk is on the crust side of the equation, and little flickers of other things are present too, such as the melodic passage found on the intro or the almost Amebix-like opening of 'Sweet Fields Of Ecstasy'. It's definitely not good time, fun punk (though the gang vocals featured later on the aforementioned track might trick you), and the mood here is distinctly apocalyptic and hateful.

Songs are short and compact, composed of a handful of riffs and pounding d-beats glued together by Sam's harsh, unrelenting vocal performance. What the riffs might lack in pure memorability they make up for in effectiveness; this is music more based off a mood than individual moments, and it has that depraved, indifferent mood in spades. Ives makes stark, rather barbaric music, and 'Regression' might be the best track, with its dramatic stops and bursts in blast beats and pure tremolo mayhem that almost sound derived at times from Mayhem itself.

Though some expansion might be needed on the band's sound and style, 'Burial Of The Modernized Soulless' is definitely more than I could ask for from nearly any black/punk band out there today. There are even indications of some further ambition on the part of the band: the droning final outro indicates a band with more up its sleeve than d-beats and punk riffs. Looking forward to hearing more of this band's material, and I encourage you to try it as well if you like your black metal primitive, punky, and brutal.