IX : Everyone, Everything, Everywhere, Ends

Shining-IX---Everyone_-Everything_-Everywhere_-Ends-41474-1_2In 1996 Niklas Kvarforth, a twelve year old from Halmstad, in south west Sweden, formed black metal band Shining. Their debut album “Within Deep Dark Chambers” was released in 2000.

Since then, Kvarforth and band have released a further eight albums, and numerous EPs, with the newest being “IX : Everyone, Everything, Everywhere, Ends” released in April 2015.

Niklas Kvarforth
Niklas Kvarforth

From the outset Shining have been a band that pushes the boundaries of acceptability, as they are vocal in their support and promotion of suicide and self-harm in the lyrical content of their material – including drug abuse, something that is also indicated in one of their rare music videos, for the song “Tillsammans Ar Vi Allt” (which translates as “Together We Are Everything”) from the 2011 album “V : Född Förlorare (Born Loser)”

Peter Huss
Peter Huss

Whilst this ideology does nothing for me, and I can quite see why people might get upset about it, musically the band are strong, an certainly “IX…” is a very good, well produced, extreme metal album. Joining vocalist / guitarist Kvarforth are guitarists Peter Huss and Euge Valovirta, bassist Christian Larsson and drummer Rainer Tuomikanto.

Euge Valovirta
Euge Valovirta

An eerie soundscape ushers in opening track “Den Påtvingade Tvåsamheten” (Being Forced Into Twosomeness) an atmospheric instrumental which is also rather gentle and melodic in places, recalling perhaps some mid-period Opeth. The piano ending to that track lulls us into a false sense of security however, as we are immediately woken up by the initially pacey and snarling “Vilja & Dröm” (Will & Dream) which itself has slower passages but never loses its menace.

Christian Larsson
Christian Larsson

“Framtidsutsikter” (Future Prospects) begins with a simple acoustic guitar motif accompanying Kvarforth’s almost plaintive vocals before gradually progressing to a mid-paced metal sound. “Människotankens Vägglösa Rum” (Human Thoughts, A Room Without Walls) has some aggressive riffing and excellent drum work from Tuomikanto underpining more tortured vocals, and manages to build up to quite a furious pace.

Rainer Tuom
Rainer Tuomikanto

“Inga Broar Kvar Att Bränna” (No More Bridges Left To Burn) and “Besök Från I(ho)nom” (A Visit From WitHi(m)n) round out the record, with the latter being another good example of just how well Kvarforth has developed the progressive side of his band without losing the fury and blackness that lies underneath it all.

Not for everyone, particularly taking into account the lyrical subject matter. However, given that the songs are sung in Swedish, for listeners such as myself it’s a case of getting an aural impression rather than the actual words – and listening to this record in terms of the music and mood I would certainly recommend a listen to anyone who appreciates black or progressive black metal…

shining-german-tour-prIX : Everyone, Everything, Everywhere, Ends tracklist:

1. Den Påtvingade Tvåsamheten / 2. Vilja & Dröm/ 3. Framtidsutsikter / 4. Människotankens Vägglösa Rum / 5. Inga Broar Kvar Att Bränna / 6. Besök Från I(ho)nom

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2 thoughts on “IX : Everyone, Everything, Everywhere, Ends”

  1. I apologize if this is redundant, I could not tell if the first send was successful.

    First of all, I found your blog by searching on Halestorm/Roger Hale
    The band are relatively local to me and I only recently found them and could kick myself for missing their growth years at venues all around where I live. There is the power of video however. The new album is a well paid off risk and is so different from the past work. My wife and I are seeing them along with The Pretty Reckless and Starset at the Stone Pony, Asbury Park, NJ on 15 May. Front row baby!

    Secondly, loved your marriage account, my wife is a lifelong all thing UK fanatic and if she had been invited to your wedding, would have absolutely loved it, complete with cleaning up the night before the wedding. All a part of the ambiance.

    Thirdly, did I hear you correctly, that the band from Sweden supports suicide? Surely I did not. …and it isn’t for all of the usual reasons associated with Christianity. Years ago I could understand the motivation as there was absolutely no understanding of why people did commit suicide other than the obvious drivers that others could see. The knowledge of what is going on in the brain was only likened to demons and such. It was the extent of knowledge back in those days. People want to commit suicide FOR A REASON, much like a lot of drug addicts are self medicating. It is indicative of larger issue and usually(always?) due to an out of balance brain chemistry. If this is a pro-suicide stance, I am chilled. It border on brutal ignorance. I do not fail to account for individuals who, despite the advance help of today, might still off themselves. That is deeply sad, not something to promote!

    I’n not trying to preach to you as I do not know your stances on this. Merely to point out my horror in reading this group’s neanderthal position (if I read them correctly).

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    1. Thanks for your comments – I’m glad you enjoyed most of what you read!

      With regard to Shining’s stance on suicide / self-harm, I believe that, as abhorrent as it seems, they (or at least Niklas Kvarforth) are in favour of and promote both.

      As I tried to make clear in my post, it’s not something that I support – although I do enjoy their music. I suppose that as I don’t speak Swedish the lyrical side of things pass me by to be honest.

      I do think that, if we value free speech etc., then we have to accept such views may be aired even though most right minded people would completely disagree with them, and do completely understand that it can and most likely will cause offence to some.

      On the positive side, hope you and your wife enjoy Halestorm and The Pretty Reckless – both good bands (not heard of Starset though – may have to check them out).

      Thanks again for your comments.

      Like

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