An 'écorché' is a drawing of a human or animal figure without the skin in order to show the muscles. This kind of drawing was first used in the Renaissance, introduced by Leon Battista Alberti. Later Da Vinci used this technique to make anatomic drawings of the human body. Needless to say that these drawing have quite a morbid atmosphere, which today reminds me a bit of the Körperwelten-exhibitions by Dr. Gunther von Hagens. If that seems quite sick to you, you should stop reading this writing now.
Écorché is a two-man band consisting of JGW on vocals, guitars, synths and programming and Wolfman on bass, synths, and samples. Although 2014 stands as the official founding year, the act has been active in the world of old school industrial electronics for nearly a decade. Yet, in 2014 the black metal elements were added, pusing the act in a completely new, and quite unique, direction. Haunting, eerie and crushing music in the vein of the bands I mentioned earlier but completely different, that's what we get on 'Deep In The Ground'.
As far as imagery is concerned, this album evokes hallucinations of haunted buildings, chainsaw chases and rivers of blood and guts. People are being nailed to the walls, dismembered alive and eaten by enormous maggots. Deep in the dungeons, survivors scream and cry, constantly being tormented by their own dreams and memories of the terror above their heads. Anyone who escapes, has to face a boobytrapped forest where the ragged bodies of past escapees dangle from the trees.
Musically, it's a highly confusing trip into a rarely explored region of extreme music. Black metal riffs and a frightening atmosphere are being enhanced by distorted vocals and mechanical pounding of electronic drums. Above all, the album is extremely noisy and intensely heavy, even in the melodic passages. In some way it reminds me of The Kovenant but a lot grittier and full of angst. Maybe in some aspect it even reminds me of the grotesque nature of Cradle Of Filth, dressed in a Whitehouse and Prurient sound.
My advice: listen to this. There's a possibility you might hate everything about it instantly. If so, listen again. At least you will witness something unique, arguably even unprecedented. On the other hand, you just might find a brand new source of inpiration for the future of extreme music. In that case, you had a front-row seat to the pioneers of blackened post-industrial, or whatever term those strange music journalists come up with.
To end this review, allow me to mention that the CD is handmade by Emir Togrul who sprays the discs, cuts and inserts the prints for the jewel case, hand-paints the t-shirts and patches and everything this label comes up with. That alone should gain your respect, it shows that the DIY attitude is not dead.