Split CDs are particularly dicey when one band impresses and the other wimps out in comparison. So it is here. Montreal’s AUN contributes a couple of songs loaded with ideas that borrow from and build off of drone, noise and trance. The result is a powerful stew that remains hypnotic throughout each piece. Unfortunately, Habsyll follow that with semi-tribal open-chord sludge, fronted by growly black-metal vocals. Their one song seems like a string of underground clichés strung together in the hope that it will at least scare someone.
AUN comprises Martin Dumais and Julie Leblanc, and the guitar, bass, electronics, and violin are used with precision. It’s a powerful blending of huge sounds that echo smoothly into deep drone. Of the two tracks here, “Druids” is the best. It features the addition of jagged, no-wave noise to carve out majestic emotional outbursts from within the drone. This is a song that seems to take on a life of its own independent of musician. AUN has a couple full-lengths available, and is said to be working on a new record.This split should convince you to keep an eye out for it.
French trio Habsyll don’t have it, they’ve just heard of it. Their one track, “IV,” is a din consisting of one monster chord struck over and over a voodoo drum beat, the vocals growling on monotonously. It’s raw but unfocused and ultimately annoying, like seeing the Butthole Surfers live without the acid and naked girls.