William Kampen : I am a fan of split albums. It gives me a certain feeling of nostalgia, considering split albums are more and more becoming a thing of the past. You do not really see bigger bands releasing a split record and in fact, that is quite a waste. Luckily there are still bands who share this feeling of nostalgia with me and this results in gems like the split 12” vinyl between Alkerdeel and A Den Of Robbers. Well, a gem might not be the right description, considering this record is as raw as George Baker's chin. I guess that is what you get when you have the mastering done by James Plotkin, known of Khanate and Phantomsmasher fame, to name some.
Alkerdeel has been around for about six years now, but 'Morinde' is the record that gave the band the recognition that it deserves. The sound is a bit more polished in comparison to earlier work and let us be honest, not every enjoy-er of music is into the lo-fi, minimalistic approach that you can hear at the 'Luizig' sessions, for instance. Back then, these recordings were partially improvised and recorded on a tapedeck in the rehearsal room, which results in a ridiculously foul hybrid of drone, sludge, noise, black metal and pretty much anything that will make the untrained ear fester. The material that you hear on this release contains three unreleased tracks from this particular session.
A Den Of Robbers is a band that I have been following quite a bit longer than I have with Alkerdeel. The down-hearted, ill-conditioned sound of this band is something that always attracted me. It sounds like this band is swinging around with their fists in frustration, knowing that what is bothering them is in fact inescapable. The sludge-ridden hardcore, has a certain essence that has not been heard often ever since the heydays of the powerviolence scene. That real frustration is manifested deep within the wall of sound that is projected at the listener. This material has been recorded in a similar way as Alkerdeel did. No nonsense; just the raw essence of A Den Of Robbers, recorded in one take. Also this side of the split has everything to sweep the listeners of their feet.
All in all, this record is surely worth while to pick up, but be quick, considering it is limited. Not too quick though, because I want one as well.