Nyt Liv

Ensomhedens kolde kald

Written by: AP on 21/08/2019 21:00:47

While the name Nyt Liv is unlikely to ring many bells outside the borders of Denmark, the four musicians who make up the band are not strangers to the domestic scene. Vocalist Michael Aagesen and bassist Søren Hvidt used to play in Pilgrimz and As We Fight, respectively, and as such their veins are flush with metallic hardcore punk. It is thus no surprise that this début album, “Ensomhedens kolde kald” (in English: the cold call of loneliness), bears all the hallmarks of an experienced troupe and catapults Nyt Liv to the forefront of bands trying to involve Denmark in the global hardcore punk conversation. And it is not unthinkable that the group will draw international attention to themselves, as, like their countrymen in Halshug and Parasight, they wear their heritage proudly on the sleeve by offering lyricism written exclusively in their native language. Disaffection knows no borders, and “Ensomhedens kolde kald” packs plenty of such sentiment to bond over, whether one understands the words or not.

From the climate crisis to resurgent populism and racism, there is a lot to be pissed off about right now, and such frustrations provide the perfect breeding ground for the level of despair and vitriol discharged by Aagesen & co. on this record. Although you would be looking in vein for things that might render “Ensomhedens kolde kald” a groundbreaking effort for the genre, it is nonetheless difficult to resist the tug of songs like “Kniven” and “Blodet skygger” due to the intensity with which they are delivered. By switching between slow and heavy grooves like those laid down by the opener, and more urgent blitzes like the latter, Nyt Liv have succeeded in creating the variety needed to maintain a tight grip on the listener’s collar for the entire duration of the album. There is more to it of course, as ultimately it is the frantic screaming of Aagesen and the distressed, brooding melodies that rip through the likes of “Fortidens tæsk” and “Det skal du nok blive” courtesy of guitarist Martin Goltermann, that leave you gasping for air once they are done shaking you by the collar. Unlike so many other artists practicing in the hardcore punk genre, the messages here never seem to be lost beneath mindless breakdowns or chugging. Instead, the whirlwind of emotion Aagesen sets free as he rails against drug and alcohol abuse, domestic violence, loneliness and other injustices, receives a steroid injection from the tone of the instrumentation and the atmosphere that hangs heavily over his musings.

“Ensomhedens kolde kald” is a powerful album, then — one that has its finger on the pulse in both in terms of commenting on society, and the direction hardcore punk seems to be heading right now. The desperation is palpable and the melodies stand tall, all of which helps establish Nyt Liv in the vanguard of a resurgent Danish hardcore scene, which seems to have developed the courage to defy convention and think a little differently at last. Yet despite all the potential loaded into its best moments, it would not be prudent to tiptoe around the fact that even at 26 minutes of runtime, “Ensomhedens kolde kald” is hampered by monotony here and there. The catharses are there to be savoured, but once those 26 minutes clock in with “Lys”, one is left with a feeling that this Copenhagen-based outfit is yet to realise its full potential. Be that as it may, “Ensomhedens kolde kald” is still a riveting début and if you are yet to experience these songs live, I would implore you to do so at your earliest convenience better to feel and witness with your own eyes the passion of these four musicians for their art.


Download: Kniven, Blodet skygger, Fortidens tæsk, Det skal du nok blive
For the fans of: The Carrier, Parasight, Victims
Listen: Facebook

Release date 03.05.2019
Indisciplinarian Records

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