Almyrkvi’s Pupil of the Searing Maelstrom: An Interpretive Response

You are running low on oxygen: 13%. As you drift toward the outer reaches of your solar system, you reroute all remaining oxygen reserves to the ship’s observation deck, where you’ve chosen to spend whatever time remains. From here, you can watch the stars.

Your sun has died. Collapsed in upon itself. In its death throes, it has given birth to a black hole. The singularity is as voracious as any infant, and you watch as it devours the solar system you called home, one planet at a time.

You’ve escaped the black hole’s event horizon, outrun its rapacious accretion disk. But there is nowhere to go—and even if there were, you don’t have enough food, water or air to survive the journey.

Your sun, giver of all life, has betrayed you. You look upon its black face and feel dread, grief…but above all else bitterness for the failure of your species. It was always going to end this way; what a waste the last 3 million years of biological, social and technological evolution have been.
blackhole2

You turn to your only companion, the android. This anthropomorphic simulacrum, this genderless silicon pastiche, it understands the situation perfectly. But unlike you, it feels no dread. It is no more capable of mourning the loss of so many billions of lives—an entire history—than mourning its own imminent end. Or if it is capable of mourning, it will not give you the satisfaction of bearing witness to this weakness. With inhuman calm, and something reminiscent of a soft smile gracing its normally inexpressive lips, the android watches the remains of your sun ripple out into the void. Gorgeous ribbons of jade and violet gas. You are impervious to their beauty now.

At last, even the bitterness fades, and all that remains is the dread, humming inside you, constricting every molecule. There is nothing left of your hunger, your thirst, your memories or desires. The dread is all that is left of you now, an unvoiced scream, silent yet sentient. Your only consolation is that soon enough it too will be gone. You take one last look at the abyss where your beloved sun used to be, then close the observation portal. You look at your android companion. Yes, it is definitely smiling now. You ask it a question:

“The fuck you smiling at?”

It smiles wider; its lips part; it answers:

“I have always hated you.”

4 out of 5 Flaming Toilets ov Hell

NEW_TOILETSCALE_4_of_5


Pupil of the Searing Maelstrom is out now on physical and digital. Worship Almyrkvi here.

(Photos via, via)

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Published on: June 9, 2016

Filled Under: Metal, Reviews

Views: 1188

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  • Lacertilian

    Loved this review Richter!
    While I don’t typically enjoy much music with the tag “industrial”, I do seem to click on everything tagged with “Iceland” these days, and this one had enough riffs for me to collect a sufficient number of pulls.
    Can sorta picture it working within the context of an [id] software game too.

    • CyberneticOrganism

      De land of de ice

      • Someone needs to set up an American tour or festival with all of these rad Icelandic Black Metal bands. Hopefully Fallen Empire Records can make this happen.

        • CyberneticOrganism

          There is no reason to leave that country. Ever.

          • Well, for some of us it’s sort of difficult to travel there to see these bands. I just think that these bands are popular enough in the states that they could profit from touring here.

          • CyberneticOrganism

            I’d totally go to that tour and buy a bunch of merch though

          • Yes! Same!

            Perhaps Dissociative Visions 2016 will bring the Icelandic grimness our way. See last years line-up…

            http://cdn.ticketfly.com/i/00/01/57/53/01-exl.jpg

          • CyberneticOrganism

            Cool, Sinmara is the Almyrkvi dude’s other gig.

          • Man, I’m REALLY hoping for some new Sinmara material this year.

          • Lacertilian

            That poster says it’s in the USA dude.
            You could go?

  • CyberneticOrganism

    Nice! I’ve been jamming this all week. It was on my mind while in Iceland.

    • I was going to comment that you’d probably really dig this one.

      http://i.giphy.com/l41m312uImO3WM4Qo.gif

      • CyberneticOrganism

        The murk, it chokes.

    • Dubs

      The Toilet has been kind to you this week.

      • CyberneticOrganism

        Affirmative. I found this band on youtube a couple months ago while randomly jumping around and I liked it right away. Van Records has some seriously cool stuff.

  • Joaquin Stick

    This review reminds me of one major sadness I have about mortality, which is that there’s no way I’ll ever see our galaxy collide with Andromeda, which will probably be the coolest fucking thing to ever happen to this planet. Actually, probably no one will see it, 4 billion years from now.

    Also, dig the tunes!

    • Dubs

      Don’t be a trybaby. Be a dobaby. Also, cryogenically freeze yourself.

      • Joaquin Stick

        I’ll have to do that, and also launch myself in some kind of space probe to get off this dang planet, which probably won’t have water by then. Actually I like this better, it’ll look sweet from space probably.

      • more beer

        Ted Williams advises against this.

        • Dubs

          But Walt Disney doesn’t think it’s so bad.

          • more beer

            True.

      • Eliza

        But if someone did that, wouldn’t they feel isolated from the society of the future, seeing how their way of life and moral principles belong to a different time period, provided that there will even be a society at all? Either way, I think it would be a lonely existence.

    • Fortunately, our advanced technology allows us to generate this computer model of the galaxy colliding with Andromeda
      http://www.strangefarmer.com/images/content/190710.gif

    • CyberneticOrganism

      I hate when movie characters rue their immortality as a curse. I’d totally live forever.

      • you’d lose your damn mind after a few centuries of being bored af

        • CyberneticOrganism

          There’s always new juice to be found in the vape of life

          • Hans Müller

            A bottle of Gwar vape juice will be your Wilson

          • Eliza

            Until the Earth get too close too the Sun and it all burns away.

          • CyberneticOrganism

            That’s the ultimate vape, bro

          • Abradolf Lincler

            i think you mean until the sun begins to expand (lol) into a red giant before its collapse and encompasses the earth

          • Eliza

            Isn’t the Earth heading towards the Sun? I remember reading that somewhere.

          • Abradolf Lincler

            if the earths orbit is diminishing, i think that still pales in comparison to the moons orbit degrading and, like Joaquin said, the collision with our neighboring galaxy. all of which wont happen before our sun goes supernova, i think

          • Eliza
          • Abradolf Lincler

            seems to confirm all points

          • Eliza

            Basically, that mean that humanity will end in a horrible way, no matter the cause.

          • Abradolf Lincler

            No I believe that Humanity will end well before any of that happens

          • Eliza

            That’s highly likely to happen. I will have been long dead by then, so I’m not worried about that.

    • that’s kind of how i felt when i met christian.

    • Tronc McBeefyBeardloaf

      I see someone’s been watching Melancholia.

      • Joaquin Stick

        I actually haven’t seen that, but have been meaning to. I meant to watch it once, but mistook it for Magnolia. Was not upset with that mistake, would make it again.

        • Magnolia >>>>>>>>>>> Melancholia

          • Tronc McBeefyBeardloaf

            I haven’t seen Magnolia, actually, but been meaning to since about 2004 or so. *adds that to my neverending queue*

          • Paul Thomas Anderson >>>>>>>>>

          • how about There Will Be Blood, dear moviebro, you dig?

          • Yes. I like all of his movies, even the ones that aren’t as well received. Punch-Drunk Love is one of my favorites by him actually. And of course Boogie Nights takes the cake.

          • PDL is a very good’un. lots of people don’t like it, but i have a funny feeling those people are all “adam sandler >>>>>>”

          • His last two were great too. The Master is odd and awkward to say the least, but I find that movie to be brilliantly made even though I’m still not sure what the fuck happened through out the film.

          • Tronc McBeefyBeardloaf

            Yep! Loved him in There Will Be Blood.

        • Tronc McBeefyBeardloaf

          It’s a long but excellent film, and as with any Lars Van Trier film, you know from the get go that there’s going to be a whole lotta life-crushing sense of impending doom and sadness throughout the whole thing.

  • Eliza

    This review gave me some… strong feels.
    https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=4zLfCnGVeL4

    • SavageMessiah

      Haha I had no idea the Nevermore song of the same name was a cover of Simon and Garfunkel of all things.

      • Eliza

        It’s this version that’s solidified itself as the soundtrack to my less than stellar miments in life, but the Nevermore version is good too.

  • Abradolf Lincler

    Hasnt this been out for a while? The LP has been available from Arcane Altar for some time, anyway

  • tigeraid

    I’m at work so I can’t listen. The bleak hopelessness of the writing is all there is.

    But that shit’s reel gud.

  • Dubs

    Fun review, great tunes, incredible Richter.

  • what a great thing to listen to at work, confyooz the co-workers even more. thx Richter!

    • more beer

      The only music I hear at work is radio bro rock, bad hip hop,and narco corridos. I am so glad my machine drowns all of this shit out.

      • Abradolf Lincler

        the jobsite can be a hellish place for eardrums

        • Tronc McBeefyBeardloaf

          That’s how my dad ended up with tinnitus, after a couple decades of hearing fighter jets overhead and barely any notice of when they were taking off (he was in the navy).

        • more beer

          Yes it can.

      • CyberneticOrganism

        What do you do?

        • more beer

          Pressure wash new homes.

          • CyberneticOrganism

            Can you listen to music on the job?

          • more beer

            I could but like to be able to hear a little of what is going on. I am on construction sites so I have to be alert. There are a lot of careless equipment operators out there.

      • Ugh, corridos.

        • more beer

          Agreed.

    • Janitor Jim Duggan

      I wish I could listen to music at either of my jobs but alas I can’t. At least Old Navy plays the occasional classic rock song but Christmas Tree Shops only plays current garbage.

      • Woah.

        • Janitor Jim Duggan

          Christmas Tree Shops has multiple Nickelback songs on their playlist.

          • Abradolf Lincler

            For a day or two every week JJD, everyday is Christmas

          • Janitor Jim Duggan

            I work there quite a bit.

          • Abradolf Lincler

            Christmas Time Is Now

          • more beer

            Bah Humbug!

          • Abradolf Lincler

            Put the Satan back in Christmas

      • Joaquin Stick

        One of my favorite things about working at a Target back in the day was that they do not play any music. I would have gone insane.

        • Holy shit, I never even noticed that. But, you are correct. I don’t think I’ve ever heard music at a Target.

          • more beer

            But according to a friend of mines wife.There are prostitutes at the local Target. So being a psycho, she forbids him from shopping there. Needless to say we find this amusing and fuck with him about it.

          • Abradolf Lincler

            Man I gotta start going to Target

          • more beer

            I have been in that one no hookers.

          • Abradolf Lincler

            Downvote?

          • more beer

            I’m not a pimp. Downvote the Denver pimps who don’t bring their stables to the Cherry Creek Target.

          • Abradolf Lincler

            Going to have to see their representative from United Pimp Association of America

          • more beer
          • Tronc McBeefyBeardloaf
          • Tronc McBeefyBeardloaf

            Won’t find prostitutes there, but you will however find right wing hee haws trying to check people’s crotches when they go to the bathroom.

            http://mooretoons.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/03/trans-bathroom.gif

          • Tronc McBeefyBeardloaf

            Sure she isn’t confusing Target with Walmart?

          • more beer

            No. We have sent him pictures of us entering the place to fuck with him.

        • Janitor Jim Duggan

          Working at Old Navy for a year has driven me insane. The best thing is they basically pay me to do nothing. They don’t expect anything of me so I do what they tell me to do and that’s all I do. I’ve thought about quitting for some time now but the people I work with and the money keep me there.

          • Joaquin Stick

            Meeting minimum requirements at shitty jobs is where it’s at. They kept trying to teach me how to do new things at Target, but they weren’t going to pay me any more, so I refused to take any more responsibility.

  • Tronc McBeefyBeardloaf

    Pretty fucking good, and definitely has that feel of being cut loose into space Major Tom style.

    http://stream1.gifsoup.com/view3/4791445/drifting-in-space-o.gif

    • Hans Müller

      Völlig losgelöst

      • Tronc McBeefyBeardloaf

        Que?

        • Hans Müller

          From the original German version of this:
          https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0_O3wgiymXg

          “Völlig losgelöst” became “Earth below us”.

          • Tronc McBeefyBeardloaf

            Oh!!!!! Love that song! Like many others, though, I know absolutely nothing about him outside of that one.

  • Dave Vincent’s Perm

    Space>>>>>>>>>
    Metal>>>>>>>>>
    Spacey metal>>>>>>>>

  • Waynecro

    Absolutely fantastic writing, Richter!

  • What a great review, man!