Review 1647 : Etat Limite – Emil Mihai Cioran – English

Etat Limite cannot stop.

After two albums in 2022, followed by four double-singles, Wintersieg (all instruments/vocals, ex-Deinos Mastema, ex-Lying Figures) announces the release of the third album of his project, Emil Mihai Cioran, whose tracks are taken from the writings of the eponymous man.

First of all, I wondered who Emil Mihai Cioran was. Even if his name was familiar to me, I knew nothing about this Romanian pessimistic skeptic and ascetic philosopher, who became stateless and resided in France until his death in 1995.

I obviously didn’t become an expert on Emil Mihai Cioran’s work, but reading a short biography of him allowed me to perceive the album in a different way, starting with Vanity of Compassion, the first rather cleaned composition, letting sampled lyrics appear between some dark keyboards, followed by Le Bréviaire des Vaincus, a track with a very Old School approach mixing melancholy and hoarse screams, which seem far away. The haunting slowness gives this dark instrumental a heavy touch, completed by a sample, then by the return of more intense vocals, guiding us to Le Livre des Leurres and its heady, openly more macabre sounds. We feel it in this suffocating quietness, but also in the lyrics and in the progression of vocal parts, which seem to progressively ignite by leading us to the heart of darkness before releasing us to let the aggressive La Chute dans le Temps strike with its sharp riffs. Without cutting back on the delivered message, the sound is much more abrasive and fast, creating a hurricane of visceral rage which will only slow down after a short break to build up again, followed by the haunting Le Crépuscule des Pensées. The approach is more hazy for this heady track, letting soothing notes meet darkness and oppression, feeding a suffocating but fascinating veil before the theatrical final that lets Moi et le Monde confront us with a heartbreaking but intense truth illustrated by this vortex of continuous aggression. The only moment of floating will be crushed by heavy sonorities, which will accelerate again to lead us to Rencontres avec le Suicide, a long track which draws from all the project’s influences to reveal an as striking, surprising and dark melting, which obviously has two readings. Disturbing but very coherent, the sound will gradually return to saturation before letting it consume itself and then end for Apocalypse to put the final touch to the album with desperate and dark tones, without necessary saturation, to suffocate us one last time. 

With this new album, Etat Limite offers a more philosophical approach to its visceral darkness which is naturally spreaded. Whether we agree or not to his ideals, Emil Mihai Cioran reveals raw and sincere elements which perfectly fit its picture.


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