This split disc from 2005 features two corpse painted French BM crews that share a some members, and both deliver some nicely shredding tracks of Gallic grimness that's got me digging for more records from both. In contrast to the warped avant-garde sounds that I usually hear when spinning any French black metal, Cortege Funebre and Into Dagorlad both go for an older, more classic sound, but with a high degree of riff-chops and songwriting that allow both bands to rise above the hordes of BM rehash.
The first four tracks are from Cortege Funebre, whose cold, droning old school black metal weaves some epic folk melody into their buzzing black swarms, evoking the sounds of both early Mayhem, Gorgoroth, Immortal and the rural majesty of Hate Forest; tracks like "Souffrance mortuaire", "Ultime ch‚timent" and "La rŤgne de Lucifer" whip up a blackened blast of screeching high pitched screams, ominous droning minor-key riffs, passages of Burzum-esque buzz, and epic melodies swirling in cavernous ambience, moving between walzting dirges and raw swarming swarms, pretty catchy actually, but REALLY raw, too.
With Into Dagorlad, the sound heads into a much thrashier, more bestial assault, songs like "Trones de cendres" and "Cythraul" inciting epic, often seven-minute plus rituals of punky, d-beat ridden blackthrash that draws from a definite Venom influence as well as the likes of Aura Noir, old Darkthrone, Hellhammer, and early French BM, dropping stretches of slower, shambling black dirge into the blazing buzzsaw chaos, and fronted by some killer razor-gargling vokills that are layered into a hysterical screaming din.
And for the last track "Morgue", the members of both bands come together for a four minute slab of abstract buzz, an Abruptum-esque ritual of formless droning darkness, mangled minor key guitar, simple, almost martial drumming, and demonic shrieks and grunts that ends in a cloud of vile utterances and guitar noise. It's a great introduction to both bands, with almost fifty minutes of French necro oozing off this disc. Limited to 500 copies.