Make A Change… Kill Yourself – Fri

Topic of this review is a project of the Danish musician Ynleborgaz, who perhaps most will know for his main creature under the name Angantyr; unlike the black with strong folk veins that is predominant in the latter case, Make A Change… Kill Yourself since the chosen moniker leaves little doubt about the lyrical and musical contents that distinguish it. Fri is the third release, coming after of a five-year stand-by, devoted to a pitch-black depressive black but able to evoke strong emotions as few other works of the genre have managed to do in recent times. As mentioned, a perhaps overly explicit branding, as much as the album cover itself, risk rejecting many potential listeners out of hand, who might be misled into thinking of a tawdry rehash of a theme, always a rather delicate one to deal with, such as suicide; after numerous satisfying listens to Fri it can be said that it would be a big mistake to fall into such a misunderstanding, since the musical material contained therein is of the highest quality, proving to be the ideal sound carpet on which to unravel lyrics steeped in despair, the only aspect of the album not the domain of Ynleborgaz but rather of his associate Nattetale. The translation from Danish of the titles of the four long tracks are enough to understand what the prevailing sentiment encapsulated in the album is: “free from this world,” “life is a gift,” “you are alone,” “serenity,” represent the escalation that drives a human being to the extreme decision to take his or her own life, faced with the inability to bear the burden of an existence that, while it is true that it is a gift, turns out to be anything but welcome for too many. But beyond the lyrical content, the album shines with a songwriting of rare beauty; Ynleborgaz evokes with his guitar all the feelings that those approaching DSBM would like to feel: melancholy, despair, grief, anger and finally resignation. In this context, the keyboards play a skillful bridging role, rising to prominence only in the work’s epilogue, as if to enshrine the longed-for end of earthly suffering. Fri has no let-up moment, the pathos is always at its highest level, but one cannot avoid mentioning the nine minutes of Du Er Alene as one of the most touching episodes I have ever had occasion to listen to. Thrilling.

2012 – Black Hate Productions