M is the debut studio album by black metal project Myrkur, by Danish musician and singer-songwriter Amalie Bruun. Produced by Kristoffer "Garm" Rygg of Ulver, it was released on 21 August 2015 through Relapse Records.[1]

M
Myrkur M cover.jpg
Studio album by
Released21 August 2015 (2015-08-21)
RecordedDecember 2014
StudioOak Hill, Subsonic Society & Tomba Emmanuelle, Oslo
Genre
Length36:58
LabelRelapse
Producer
Myrkur chronology
Myrkur EP
(2014)
M
(2015)
Mareridt
(2017)

Featuring a black and gothic metal sound,[2] the album melds influences from various genres, including second wave black metal, atmospheric post-metal, gothic, darkwave, Scandinavian folk and classical music.[1] The album was named the Best Hard Rock Album of 2015 by Gaffa.[3]

Critical receptionEdit

Professional ratings
Aggregate scores
SourceRating
Metacritic83/100[4]
Review scores
SourceRating
Allmusic     [1]
The Austin Chronicle     [2]
Consequence of SoundB[5]
Exclaim!9/10[6]
Pitchfork7.9/10[7]
Spin7/10[8]
Sputnikmusic2.4/5[9]
Terrorizer8/10[10]

Upon its release, M received positive reviews from music critics. At Metacritic, which assigns a normalized rating out of 100 to reviews from critics, the album received an average score of 83, which indicates "universal acclaim", based on 10 reviews, and was the 85th highest rated album of 2015.[4] Allmusic's Thom Jurek wrote: "Myrkur's music melds all of her adopted stylistic elements, lets their seams show, and emerges with an innovative, alchemical creation of her own. M expands on black metal's boundaries yet holds its dark, foreboding spirit close."[1] The Austin Chronicle critic Michael Toland stated: "Danish raven Amalie Bruun integrates extreme intensity into both genres' [goth/black metal's] inherent drama."[2] Sean Barry of Consequence of Sound thought that "M doesn’t differentiate itself greatly from the early work of many black metal artists." Barry further added: "The album shines with potential and the promise that a more unique followup waits further down the trail."[5]

Exclaim! critic Natalie Zina Walschots praised the album, writing: "The textures of M are even more finely hewn and interwoven than its predecessor, resulting in a record that is at once profoundly tactile and deeply sensual."[6] Grayson Haver Currin of Pitchfork thought that "on M, Bruun is free and clear of any identity drama—and a much more convincing bandleader for it."[7] Spin critic Colin Joyce stated: "What remains Bruun’s strongest suit is the way she juxtaposes the extremity of her influences." Joyce further concluded: "She comes out of more subdued sections to use blast beats like scare tactics, drops in glacial vocal harmonies as soothing lullabies."[8] The Quietus' Dean Brown was also positive in his assessment of the album, writing: "By conveying the masculine and feminine duality inherent in old musical traditions and modern musical developments, Bruun has composed a truly rewarding record that defies direct categorisation."[11]

Nevertheless, Sputnikmusic's Elijah K. gave the album a mixed review, describing the album's sound as "painfully bland and too on the nose."[9]

Track listingEdit

All tracks are written by Myrkur except "Byssan Lull" (Traditional).

No.TitleLength
1."Skøgen skulle dø" (The whore had to die)5:17
2."Hævnen" (The revenge)3:23
3."Onde børn" (Evil kids)4:09
4."Vølvens spådom" (Prophecy of the Völva)1:37
5."Jeg er guden, I er tjenerne" (I am God, you are the servants)4:03
6."Nordlys" (Northern light)2:15
7."Mordet" (The murder)3:41
8."Byssan lull" (Swedish lullaby best known version by Evert Taube)2:38
9."Dybt i skoven" (Deep in the forest)3:09
10."Skaði" (Skadi)4:29
11."Norn"2:17
Total length:36:58

PersonnelEdit

Album personnel as adapted from Bandcamp.[12]

MyrkurEdit

Session musiciansEdit

Production and designEdit

  • Kristoffer "Garm" Rygg (Ulver) – mixing, production
  • Anders Møller – mixing
  • Jaime Gomez Arellano – mastering
  • Trine + Kim Design Studio – photography
  • Orion Landau – design

ChartsEdit

Charts (2015) Peak
position
US Billboard Heatseekers Albums[13] 11
US Billboard World Albums[14] 1

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ a b c d Jurek, Thom. "Myrkur – M". Allmusic. Retrieved 31 August 2015.
  2. ^ a b c Toland, Michael (14 August 2015). "Myrkur – M (Relapse)". The Austin Chronicle. Retrieved 31 August 2015.
  3. ^ Ole Rosenstand Svidt (3 December 2015). "Gaffa-Prisen: Og vinderne er..." GAFFA. Retrieved 9 December 2015.
  4. ^ a b "Myrkur – M". Metacritic. Retrieved 15 September 2015.
  5. ^ a b Barry, Sean (17 August 2015). "Myrkur – M". Consequence of Sound. Retrieved 31 August 2015.
  6. ^ a b Walschots, Natalie Zina (19 August 2015). "Myrkur – M". Exclaim!. Retrieved 31 August 2015.
  7. ^ a b Currin, Grayson Haver (31 August 2015). "Myrkur – M". Pitchfork. Retrieved 31 August 2015.
  8. ^ a b Joyce, Colin (20 August 2015). "Review: Myrkur Is a Light in Black Metal's Darkness on 'M'". Spin. Retrieved 31 August 2015.
  9. ^ a b K., Elijah (25 August 2015). "Myrkur – M". Sputnikmusic. Retrieved 31 August 2015.
  10. ^ Taylor, Rich (August 2015). "Myrkur 'M'". Terrorizer. No. 262. Leigh-on-Sea: Dark Arts. p. 64. ISSN 1350-6978.
  11. ^ Brown, Dean (25 August 2015). "Myrkur – M". The Quietus. Retrieved 31 August 2015.
  12. ^ "M by Myrkur". Bandcamp. Retrieved 31 August 2015.
  13. ^ "Myrkur – Heatseekers chart". Billboard. Retrieved 4 September 2015.
  14. ^ "Myrkur – World Albums chart". Billboard. Retrieved 4 September 2015.

External linksEdit