Myrkur, 'Nattens Barn' Amalie Bruun, the Danish musician behind the atmospheric black-metal project Myrkur, communes with the forest and summons the oceans.
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Myrkur, 'Nattens Barn'

Somewhere between the folk-based black metal of Ulver's Bergtatt and the weightless shoegaze of Cocteau Twins lies Myrkur. In recent years, that combination isn't a new one — if anything, it's overdone. But something stands out here, and it's not just that Myrkur's sole member is Amalie Bruun, a Danish model who co-leads the Brooklyn indie-pop band Ex-Cops.

In this video for "Nattens Barn," Bruun communes with the forest and summons the oceans — not an uncommon visual for the kind of searing yet atmospheric black metal she makes. What's different, however, is the level at which Bruun works. Her choral arrangements belong on a Julianna Barwick record (hint, hint), there's a powerful force behind the guitar work that would otherwise sound by-the-numbers and, most of all, Myrkur has a distinct voice in a genre that can sound indistinct. Does it always work on this debut EP? Sometimes it's messy and awkward, but "Nattens Barn" is a glimpse of something brighter — or darker, depending on what you look for.

Myrkur is out now via Relapse Records.

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