Review 2252 : Perchta – D’Muata – English

Perchta returns to tell the tale of its mountains.

Created in 2017 by Austrian duo Frau Percht (vocals/violin/percussion) and Walscher Fabio D’Amore (bass/keyboards/programming, Serenity), the band expresses itself on its region, Tyrol. Accompanied since 2022 by Loda Chris Knoll (guitars, Agrypnie), Moosmandl Christian Höll (dulcimer, Vinsta), Gsell Lukas Massinger (guitars, Lichtspielhaus) and Håscht Simon Schnückel (drums, Lichtspielhaus), the band unveil D’Muata, their second album.

They are joined by Morean (vocals, Alkaloid, ex-Dark Fortress), Dr. Ranklstein (percussion, Arg!) Theresa Wopfner (tenor hammered dulcimer & zither) and backing vocals from Claudia Ciresa, Katja Reisenbauer, Felix, Maria, Laurenz and Darius.

With its many folk instruments and mystical ambience, the album has everything to enchant us. The many vocals, both clear and saturated, also contribute to this pagan ritual of every moment, bringing to life the rage, the quietude and the mad dance that is rooted in both the Old School and chilling sounds of visceral Black Metal coupled with the Folk/Pagan roots of the Tyrol. Although I’m totally unfamiliar with this region and its traditions, the tracks sound familiar, almost reassuring in their periods of calm, but conversely they sound utterly terrifying in their moments of fury. Note, for example, the visceral duality between the end of Vom Verlanga and the screams of Ois was man san, both of them transcend us with their unique approach, but sound totally opposite when listened to. The narrative approach is also used on Heiliges Bluat, where only a few melodious notes join the vocalist, but the hazy Hebamm again wraps us effortlessly in its tenderness, finally harmonized by the power of saturation that gives a wilder rhythm to the darkness. The vocal parts diversify on D’Muata, a track where we sense the band drawing on rawer influences, then it’s percussion that takes pride of place on Wehenkanon, which draws us fully into the ominous ballet. Ausbruch pauses for a moment, invoking the spirits with a few cries, then the tenebrous intensity increases again with Longtuttin und Stampa, where the riffs become truly impressive between two anguishing passages, leading us to Mei Diana Mei Bua, the final track where the musicians are accompanied on their way by a few choirs and finally the cries of children that bring this torrent of mysticism to an end.

Although its momentum was cut short by the crisis of 2020, Perchta returns to show us all its ferocity with D’Muata, an album as visceral as it is exotic. The rawest, most visceral elements blend with Tyrolean folklore to create a unique experience, one that also seems to be catching on live.


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