Suspension of Disbelief: a term coined by poet/philosopher Samuel Taylor Coleridge in 1817 to describe an audience’s willingness to set aside their critical faculties and/or senses of logic/reason for the sake of enjoying a work of art. Usually the term applies to something fantastical or surreal, like Coleridge’s own The Rhyme of the Ancient Mariner – a reader’s enjoyment of that poem depends largely on that reader’s willingness to accept the completely implausible idea that the killing of an albatross would actually cause all that shit to go down.
So what does any of this have to do with DSKNT? Well, Vault Hunters…I’m glad you asked.
One’s appreciation of black metal as a genre depends largely on one’s willingness to suspend his or her disbelief about certain things, and has almost since the beginning. The corpse paint, the demonic aliases, the carefully cultivated mysteriousness – it could all seem kind of silly if you’re not willing to just go with it (see: any Immortal meme ever). These days it plays out more in the anonymity that so many black metal bands work to protect. On the one hand, it’s pretty impressive that any band in our Internet age could essentially have no online presence whatsoever. It’s also a bit refreshing to not actually know everything about a band, especially since, thanks to social media, there are literally dudes I met once at a show two years ago who I can tell you what they’ve had for breakfast every morning since then.
Maybe that’s my fault for not cleaning out my friends list a bit more regularly, but my point is this: if it were to somehow turn out that the guy behind my favorite one-man raw black metal band is actually living a comfortably bourgeois life working as an investment banker, and that he only does the kvlt thing every other weekend when his ex-wife has the kids, the illusion would be shattered for me. If you play black metal and aren’t living in a decrepit castle a la Les Légions Noirs and dumpster diving for sustenance, then I don’t want to know about it.
On a certain level, I think DSKNT understand a little something about suspension of disbelief. The project has a Facebook page, but this is the sum total of the information to be found on it: “Noise Shaped Subdivision of DSKNT Industry.” There’s also a Bandcamp link, but there’s nothing there. There’s a bit more on the DSKNT Industry page, but it’s no less cryptic. In fact, based on the (absence of) information on their socials, I couldn’t even tell you from whence DSKNT hails– and they don’t have Metal Archives page, either. There’s enough to go on in the promo pack that I could probably follow the threads and figure a few things out if I wanted to, but I don’t. I’d much rather consider the project’s debut full-length PhSPHR Entropy based solely on its musical merits, since it’s pretty rare these days to actually have the chance to do so.
As a whole, the six track, 42-minute PhSPHR Entropy plays out like an extended exercise in aural punishment, so clearly born of sadistic intent that if someone told me that DSKNT’s mastermind is actually Chatterer, one of the Cenobites from the Hellraiser series, I wouldn’t be the least bit surprised. The first word that comes to mind when listening to tracks like “S.O.P.O.R.,” which we’re excited to be premiering below, is suffocating. Shortly thereafter, it’s descriptors like Hellish, dizzying, violent, and abstract. DSKNT makes difficult black metal, both from a compositional standpoint and in terms of what it demands from the listener. Unlike a lot of black metal bands that play in a similar style, though, it doesn’t come off as relentless. There are multiple tempo changes throughout the track, and slower, chill inducing riffs that spider up the back of listeners’ necks as they brace for the next blast-driven attack.
PhSPHR Entropy will be available on December 4 via Clavis Secretorvm.