Even amid the bloodiest battles, a soldier expects to have some downtime to regroup, reload, and refresh. The excruciatingly loud ravages of war can’t last forever, lest the feeble human heart tick toward the bursting point, every whistling bullet and agonized cry pushing the spirit closer to hopeless disillusionment. Sutekh Hexen, up until releasing Become (first as a limited-to-50 1/4 tape reel, now as a limited-to-500 LP), understood this concept, buttressing their skull-shattering post-sunn 0))) excursions with periods of calm that allowed the listener to regroup and even, in some cases, lose an iota or two of interest.
Now that Become is out of the bag, however, the brave troops may never get another break, much less a furlough. Far from the experiment in dronoise and decay it was initially hyped up to be, Become is one of the heaviest, and most elusive, records of the last few years and a must for diehards searching for a respite from all the senseless, albeit often pleasurable, BM gunfights flooding the exploding metal market. It’s a journey more than a collection of songs (and that makes sense, as it consists of but two long-form pieces) and continually deludes the ear, with riffs so distant-yet-deadly they could be buried under 6 feet of noise dirt, curls of swirling effects that ripple like an Army battalion flag in the wind, screams that encroach upon the listener from all angles, and the general feeling that a merciless wind is tearing at the foundations of the entire apparatus.
You’ll swear your ears are lying to you like filthy dogs when you try to forage through the swampy layers of thick forest. Rather than attempting to process what your sense are telling you, it’s best to sit still and focus intently, as if you just heard a twig snap outside your tent. Don’t expect structure, crescendo, or even logic to become part of the equation. Become hits so forcefully there’s no time to connect the dots or elucidate which form(s) of technology birthed this righteously ferocious beast. If Malefic really did scream from the confines of a coffin to lend Black One that fresh-from-the-funeral-home smell, Sutekh Hexen members Kevin Yuen and A.C. Way must have literally died and came back to life to birth Become. It’s that sick, that benevolent, that noise-fucked.
Don’t wait for your own resurrection to get a copy for yourself.