BIOLLANTE (FRA) – J’espère que tu danseras quelque part, 2022 🇬🇧
When some artists have a very well-defined and delimited style, no matter how experimental the results are, it is practically impossible for their particular way of doing things not to «taint» other parallel projects. BIOLLANTE, which borrows its name from one of the dozens of monsters that fought against Godzilla in those Japanese science fiction films, is the new product from the NON SERVIAM collective. Like the anarchist collective they are, whose faces we don’t know but whose limbs we do, the (alleged) perpetrators of this new sonic attack hide under the names of Void and Moon, with the indispensable collaboration of GOBSCREW.
It doesn’t take long to realize that BIOLLANTE has the same elements as NON SERVIAM, so what does make it different? Something as simple as the quantity and order of the materials. If NON SERVIAM relied on black metal, industrial, and, to a lesser extent, hip hop; here they take an interesting turn and industrial hip hop takes the lead leaving all kinds of metal as something more marginal. Like NON SERVIAM who have decided to take DEATH GRIPS or DÄLEK as much more serious influences, instead of looking to DODHEIMSGARD or THORNS.
The band doesn’t hide the similarities, indeed they proudly display them, even presenting a song like «Le Monde me revient crié«, which directly samples during its first half «Il pleut partour derrière«, from NON SERVIAM‘s last EP. However, it is far from being a revision of the latter and will soon go its own way, having in the end little in common with its «sister» song.
BIOLLANTE knows very well what their audience is, those who already tolerate the music of the collective or the most experimental hip hop. J’espère que tu danseras quelque part is arid and dense, including the 20-minute excess that closes the album under the name «Porquoi Pas«. But what other kind of atmosphere can you give to themes such as child suicide, mental illness, incarceration, the prison system… ? Or bearing in mind that this collaboration came about as a result of the imprisonment of a close political colleague for NS. So, not a catchy and easily digestible one, for sure.
In general, and with practically no hint of melody or relief, the beats stand out above everything else, even on a par with the vocals, with industrial rhythms bordering on noise at some points, and metallic riffs.
Take the aforementioned «Le Monde me revient crié» as an example. It is one of the few examples of «beauty» in the opus. In its ten minutes and although it is maintained for the whole length, the melody is progressively covered by GOBSCREW‘s work, the distorted guitars, the drones, and the screams. And. if we didn’t get it right, this was the first song gestated between these parts.
But perhaps the most interesting song, the one that best reflects the whole nature of the album – or somewhat exaggerates it – is «Pourquoi Pas«, which more than a song is a blank piece of paper where, as the minutes go by, BIOLLANTE improvise. Thus, several «mini-songs» are generated, in which GOBSCREW make a few minutes their own, dark ambient/black metal sections. At the same time, they think of their next step, harpsichords with sampled conversations in French (a hallmark of the collective), or end with drones inspired by BLUT AUS NORD.
BIOLLANTE‘s debut has many virtues, but it also runs the same risk as any other product of a high experimental level and does not end up «hooking» the listener. A premeditated attempt to challenge us. Their way of breaking with the established system, and how the structure and format of a song or an album should be. And, for us, they have hit the nail on the head.