Scarcity announce debut record, Aveilut, out on July 15th via The Flenser
There is a new band in town and their name is Scarcity. Formed by multi-instrumentalist Brendon Randall-Myers, the conductor of the Glenn Branca Ensemble since Branca’s passing, as well as by vocalist Doug Moore of Pyrrhon and Seputus fame, Scarcity’s potent experimental black metal possesses a sense of loss, which becomes all too apparent in their debut record, Aveilut. Written by Randall-Meyers while he was processing the sudden deaths of two people close to him, the record was tracked by him while caught in Beijing’s first lockdown of 2020, and finished while surrounded by the overwhelming plague visuals of New York’s early COVID peak. Back in Brooklyn, Moore soon found himself in the midst of an equally bleak lockdown experience – living next to a funeral home when New York City was America’s COVID epicenter. From conception through development, tangible death surrounded Aveilut.
The result of such a profound closeness with death is the grief-stricken Aveilut, which takes its name from the Hebrew word for mourning. Alternate tunings, 72-note octaves, psychoacoustic phenomena and macro-phrases embody the hugeness of loss, the inexplicable space of death’s void that Randall-Myers faced both on a personal and existential scale. Together with Moore’s gripping vocal delivery and stark lyrics, the record takes the form of a hyperobject, an entity with such vastness and reach that it’s difficult for the human mind to comprehend. Proof of this sentiment the first single off of Aveilut, entitled “II”, which surfaces alongside a video by filmmaker Derrick Belcham, featuring sound-reactive footage of dancer Jacalyn Tatro frenetically juxtaposed with the massive, harsh landscapes of southern Iceland. You can watch the video below this article.
Consisting of one 45-minute composition separated into six sections, the music on Aveilut is black metal roughly in the vein of Jute Gyte, Krallice, Mare Cognitum, and Enhare, with hefty doses of post-Branca microtonal guitar abuse and a cinematic scope that draws on Randall-Myers’ work with orchestras. Aveilut’s mathematical abstraction and lyrical focus on the greatness of the void breed raw emotion, attempting to represent a catastrophe, the vastness and inevitability of things outside our control, as well as a direct expression of grief, a kind of requiem. Though born of Randall-Myers’ and Moore’s intense intimacy with absence, Aveilut is an attempt to present a harrowing universal representation of death’s true form.
Aveilut will be released on July 15th via The Flenser. Physical and digital pre-orders are now available here.
Photo credit: Caroline Harrison