Rashomon, the debut album of Matt Heafy's black-metal side project, Ibaraki, is set to arrive May 6 via Nuclear Blast.
And following last month's single, Tamashii No Houkai – which, like other tracks on the album, sees creative contributions from Emperor's Insahn – Heafy has offered up another track, Akumu, this time calling for assistance from Behemoth frontman Nergal.
Sprawling and grandiose, the track once again provides Heafy a chance to explore the scope of his creativity, as he injects rapid-fire alternate picking riffs over blast beats, and pounding palm-muted lines over groovier rhythmic arrangements. The riff at the 3:17 mark is perhaps one of Heafy's best. Check it out below.
“‘Akumu’ translates to ‘nightmare’,” Heafy explains, “and with this piece, I encourage the listener to work to find their interpretations of what they feel from the lyrics, music, and the haunting visuals of the music video.
“I have always been fascinated by Sagazan's ‘Transfiguration’, and for years, I have wanted to pay homage to his works with a performance art piece; to finally be able to immerse myself in his style was an intense experience.”
He adds: “Having Nergal guest in this Insahn co-written piece allowed me to combine many of my long-time influences; and when I presented with Nergal the challenge of translating my lyrics into Polish, it brought the song to another level.”
Heafy is, of course, no stranger to the world of heavy metal, having fronted Orlando mainstays Trivium since 2000. And while Ibaraki marks his first official foray into the black-metal realm, he's clearly embracing this new musical direction, as the material is some of most exciting metal music of the year so far.
Rashomon is available to preorder (opens in new tab) now – check out the full tracklisting below.
- Hakanaki Hitsuzen
- Jigoku Dayū
- Tamashii No Houkai
- Akumu (Feat. Nergal)
- Rōnin (Feat. Gerard Way)
- Susanoo No Mikoto (Feat. Ihsahn)