Deutsch Nepal

Comprendido Time Stop

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Consisting of a series of recordings made from 1992 to 1996, Comprendido is a good representation of the aggressive, dark black pitch of Deutsch Nepal's work. The band being a one-man operation courtesy of -- kid you not -- one Lina der Baby Doll General, a Swede, everything here, outside of a brief guest vocal/horns appearance by another band on one song, is what one guy can do on his own. The results? Pretty darn fine both in terms of grinding atmospherics and focused intensity. While the themes at play aren't that far off from the slew of death metal releases that seemed to explode from Scandinavia throughout the '90s, sonically Deutsch Nepal is very much a member of the Cold Meat Industry roster, favoring electronic/industrial explorations of sonic gloom and gore. A few tracks fall short of pop radio (if not sounding), like the brief "Morgue Restaurant" and "The Phlegethon Fish," featuring the aforementioned guest appearance from the Moon Lay Hidden Beneath a Cloud. It's not particularly noticeable, more like further shading, if attractive shading, to the heavily flanged rhythm. Otherwise, length and mood-setting are key. "Thomas 29 Needles" is a good track to start out with -- a nine minute number that begins with a lengthy movie sample trashing God and any divine plan (utterly appropriate stuff in context), it shifts to a low, rumbling pulse for most of the song. Towards the end more overt orchestration and arranging comes to the fore, in the vein of Laibach's wry post-Wagnerian epics, though still pitched low, while Lina hoarsely chants lyrics. If Deutsch Nepal has a secret, it's restraint. While whatever vocals there are sometimes sound more goofy than spooky, it's the chilled, hushed power of the music that always wins out.

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