Saturday 3 December 2016

INTRODUCING: Forest of Harambe

Meet Forest of Harambe

They’re a Harambe-themed black metal band claiming to hail from Norway.

Complete with tremolo-picked guitars, blast beats and crappy production, their sound is traditional ‘tru kvlt’ black metal. Shrieked and buried deep in the mix, the band’s lyrics are almost impossible to decipher, but if I had to take I guess, I’d say they were most likely gorilla-based.

The band have only a Bandcamp page to their name containing one three track EP titled Under the Sign of Harambe. ‘I Am The Harambe’ kicks off the EP, a menacing fuzz assault set to apeshit snare banging. Second track ‘Dicks Out’ is a slower dirge that gradually swells, less ballsy but still chillingly penetrative, a grow-er as opposed to a show-er. Spooky synth instrumental ‘Den Gratende Primat’ then closes the record, a reflective piece that gives the listener time to contemplate life, the universe and Harambe.

Eager to understand why this fallen gorilla from Cincinatti zoo had so much importance to a black metal band from Norway I took the decision to interview the group. Lead member Ygg Huur was happy to oblige.

Your black metal band is themed around Harambe the Gorilla. Did you know Harambe personally?

Ygg Huur (YH): We did not, though we did follow him for many years. Forest of Harambe comprises of radical eco-terrorists and we were extremely hurt by his senseless murder. We feel that our album is an appropriate tribute.

Under the sign of Harambe is some menacing shit. Explain the meaning behind the track Den Gratende Primat?

YH: The title means "The Crying Ape." It encapsulates the horrors of animal enslavement in a dungeon synth piece that harkens back to the ambient works of Burzum, Depressive Silence, etc.

Who are your influences?

YH: In terms of black metal, we enjoy artists from the Norwegian (Darkthrone etc.), Russian (Forest etc.), Ukrainian (Drudkh etc.), French (Blut Aus Nord etc.), and American (Yellow Eyes, Rhinocervs, etc.) scenes. There are too many to name.

As far as non-black metal music goes, we have varied tastes in music. Our members enjoy anything from post-punk to hip hop to ambient drone.

Politically, we are all influenced by many figures in the radical left. Marx, etc.

Are you really from Hordaland in Norway?

YH: Yes, we are from Bergen.

If Forest of Harambe was a pizza what toppings would it have?

YH: We would most likely be a spinach and feta cheese pizza. The cheese would have to be responsibly sourced.

How do you feel about all the Americans that voted for Harambe in the last election?

YH: We feel that it was foolish and irresponsible. However, we in Norway have a saying that goes like this: "...And even in the next day, the monkfish swims."

What music have you been listening to recently? Anything fans wouldn’t expect?

YH: In general, we have mostly been listening to field recordings of various mammals (and birds to a much lesser extent). During our last tour of southeastern Europe, we listened to a lot of Kate Bush, Deathspell Omega, and Moses Sumney.

What does the future hold for Forest of Harambe?

YH: Our drummer was jailed for burning down a Church's Chicken when we were on tour in Bulgaria. We are on a temporary hiatus until he is released.