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Skitliv - Bloodletting

Bloodletting is the latest release from Skitliv, the disturbed doom project of former Mayhem vocalist Maniac and Shining guitarist Niklas Kvarforth. Bloodletting is released as a 10-inch picture disc with artwork from David Tibet and Edvard Munch. The Current 93 connection continues on to the music where alongside two tracks from Skitliv there is a collage destruct from Current 93. The track 'Who Will Deliver Us From Gold and Planets?' was specially recorded by David Tibet and Andrew Liles (and some vanished faces) at the behest of Maniac for the opening of Skitliv live performances.

With a multi-layered vocal David Tibet endlessly asks the unanswered question "Who will deliver me from myself?" while simultaneously his voice carries spoken words as screeching violins perform in a free styled folk freakout. Tibet's voice becomes increasingly manic; by the end it is a pierced possessed shriek as the entire piece becomes devoured in a mass of noise. It's a worthwhile piece picking up on lyrics from Black Ships Ate The Sky that varies slightly to the introduction from Skitliv's Camden Underworld show that appears on the Amfetamin album.

The next track 'A Slow Pain Coming (Cold Spring mix)' is a reappearance from the aforementioned Amfetamin release. From feedback squeals and grating noise it rises with scorching guitar chords punctuated by the blackened guttural roar of Maniac. It's a demonic scream that rips through the doom-paced chord movements and torrents of distorted noise. It is a scintillating marriage of black metal and noise.

The flipside features a surprising scuzzy noise-rock version of 'A Valley Below' taken from a Skitliv demo. A wave of distorted guitars pushed onwards by a loping, lurching bassline over the distant clatter of rudimentary drum playing. Maniac's vocal is reduced to a shredded effect and is infinitely less horrifying than usual. The overall result is closer to the likes of Gravitar, Splintered or Skullflower circa Form Destroyer, than the more aggressive black metal edged version that appears on Amfetamin. The vinyl disc features on one side a detail of one of David Tibet's hallucinatory portraits rendered in broad, vivid, pastel strokes, with Edvard Munch's expressionist painting The Death of Marat on the other. With Skitliv Maniac has found a far more expressive outlet, Bloodletting captures two very different facets of Skitliv. Those expecting pure black metal will be sorely disappointed, as Skitliv appropriate doom, post-industrial and noise. It's well worth hunting down if you're a fan of Maniac or a Current 93 completist. Don't waste time as this attractive package is limited to a mere 777 copies. For more information go to