Luxembourg’s metal scene
has become more and more attractive in the last few years. There
have been lots of bands releasing albums far above average and
it was hard to tell which Luxembourgish metal band was the best:
Ophidian, Ex-Inferis, Abstract Rapture or maybe even dEFDUMp
or Eternal Tango if you allow them to be considered as metal.
After my first run through the Le Grand Guignol debut The Great
Maddening, the decision seems obvious to me.
In the mid Nineties, they called
themselves Vindsval and released one CD titled Imperium Grotesque.
Recently they changed their name to Le Grand Guignol and adopted
a much more professional attitude. The recording and production
have been done in Germany, as some band members have been involved
in other bands as well: Falkenbach and Umbra Et Imago.
The album starts with a classical
intro before the nine minute long Degenesis (Amor & Seuche)
is already the first highlight. This song contains so many different
moods from raw black metal to more symphonic keyboard sequences
with a dramatic and grotesque circus atmosphere. Another highlight
is the epic Mens Insana In Corpore Insano which makes King Diamond
look paler than he already is. Friends of gothic, folk and black
metal should love this spooky track with its weird end. Madnes
And Her Thousand Young presents the band from a more classical
side by adding female soprano vocals and baroque elements. If
you want it brutal and aggressive, you should to listen to The
Healing Process and the shorter I Who Brought Forth Myself,
although I prefer their epic stuff like Finis Coronat Opus with
its somewhat Eastern European folk touch. A curiosity is Lucilinburhuc.
The arrangements are overwhelming, the lyrics are in Luxembourgish
and it’s not the first time that I wonder how a band can
put so many different ideas into a single song.
The Great Maddening is an impressively
mature album. Even though it’s nearly one hour long, there
isn’t a single weak moment on the CD. The music is so
rich and diverse that it is suitable for black metal, gothic
and folk fans. This is definitely my metal album of the year.