“An exclamation of marching shadows”
MZ. 412 is the project of Henrik Nordvargr Björkk (aka Kremator or simply Nordvargr), a very prolific electronic musician, hailing from Sweden. The beginning can be tracked back to 1988 as Maschinenzimmer 412, with Björkk being the mastermind and other people helping in the process. That moniker was used until 1990 when the project went on hiatus, only to be resurrected in 1995 as MZ. 412.
In 2019, Björkk along with Drakh (aka Jonas Aneheim), Ulvtharm (aka Jouni Heikki Ollila), Kristoffer Oustad and Siegfried Meinertz presents Svartmyrkr, their twelfth album and the first full length in 13 years!
William Blake in 1793 described a marriage of heaven and hell. MZ. 412’s equivalent is a marriage of hell with its hellish idol, where blackened and claustrophobic industrial is paired amazingly with dark/ritual ambient, noise and black metal; a marriage which has given birth to “black industrial”, MZ. 412’s very own genre, thirty years back! In that distinctive tradition, they deliver a totalitarian -in sound- opus, in a concrete martial form. Epic lines with mesmerizing vocals, disciplined rhythms, guitars, repeated electronic chanting and Wagnerian climaxes! Most importantly, everything succumbs into absolute and consuming darkness.
This album punched me endlessly in ethereal but -somewhat- brutal manner. It is industrial, it is ambient -in all it’s forms-, it is black metal, it is polymorphic yet minimal in its context, it is pure, structured but chaotic too, it is bleak, it is smeared with nightmares. For 46 minutes I experienced nothing but utter blasts.
The point is that MZ. 412 amassed the top notch of their formative elements and created another megalith, Svartmyrkr. An exclamation of marching shadows and excruciating agony melted in the anvil and fire of their sound crafting excellence! Svartmyrkr is unleashed by two different labels: by Cold Spring Records as six-panel digipak CD, blood-red vinyl (limited edition) and pure black vinyl (regular edition) and by Cloister Recordings as (beloved) cassette.