Comedy can be a very subjective thing. This writer greatly enjoys absurdist humour. A duck with a filing cabinet for a head absolutely splits my sides. But not everyone appreciates that humour. Likewise, I look at someone like Bill Hicks and cannot find a shred of humour in the man.
Hailing from Marinaleda in Spain, Marxthrone combines the frostbitten riffing of black metal with pun-based humour and Marxist theory. These three separate disciplines bring together absolute joy. Song titles like ‘Marx ist Krieg (Via Well-Constructed and Reasonable Discussion)’ and ‘Left Wing Path’ immediately showcase the band’s playful attitude. The cover art for A Blaze In The Western Sky also displays a corpsepainted Karl Marx.
While the comedy could easily be lost on those of us who want our left-leaning metal to be serious, the actual lyrical content of the EP features important leftist themes like labour rights, fighting homelessness, and anti-capitalism. Furthermore, the riffing is truly astounding. This is some of the most solid black metal I have heard in the RABM scene. These guitars sound like hurricanes of ice and darkness. An absolute joy.
“Comedy” bands like Marxthrone, Neckbeard Deathcamp, and Gaylord (hello) have uncovered a host of leftist metalheads who are strictly anti-humour in their left-hand metal. This is unfortunate, because these three bands (and others) may wrap their art in a shroud of humour, but the ideals and dedication to unseating fascism, racism, and capitalism is honest.
Marxthrone have hit a great balance between comedy, leftist theory, and black metal. I highly endorse A Blaze In The Western Sky based on the musicianship alone.
Marxthrone will appear on the third iteration of the WOMAN (Worldwide Organisation of Metalheads Against Nazis) compilation. For further reading, check out the previous Left Hand Warpath, featuring Feminazgul, or see all previous instalments here.
Words: Richard Weeks (Blackened Death Records)