VUUR & ZIJDE (“Fire & Silk”) present ‘Zusterzon’ as the first single taken from the Dutch blackened post-punk outfit’s debut full-length “Boezem”, which has been scheduled for release on July 12, 2024.

“Perpetual images dance like a dervish above the clouds, set to driving drums and lilting guitars”, guitarist and keyboarder Nicky write. “A sudden quickening of bonded hearts – moving out of the gloom into radiant hope – soaring towards rays of brilliant fellowship.”

Love and heavy metal have always had a somewhat strained relationship as the former is at least nominally topic number 1 in pop music. It becomes even more complicated when black metal is involved, a genre in which hate is a major ingredient as much as blues musicians must have felt utter sadness.
This observation makes “Boezem”, the debut full-length of Dutch quintet VUUR & ZIJDE the more remarkable as the album revolves around themes of conditional and unconditional love – and the difference between those, the liberation of intimacy, and motherhood. This album politely abstains from going through the motions of tedious heavy metal clichés. 

It might help that although the Dutch have deep roots in black metal and the five have been or still are members in such established bands as LASTER, NUSQUAMA, SILVER KNIFE, GREY AURA, WITTE WIEVEN, and TERZIJ DE HORDE, they have stylistically shifted from their 2020 split-album with IMPAVIDA in the meantime. Having grown from a trio to a 5-piece formation has brought a wider range of influences and ideas to the table. The changes are subtle but enough to locate a part of their sound in the evolving and exciting realms of post-black metal.
The black side of the music is mainly expressed through whirling drum attacks and buzzing guitar riffs. Yet there is a second strong pillar on which “Boezem” rests, as bands that started as post-punk acts and developed into more dreamy, meditative sounds such as COCTEAU TWINS and even DEAD CAN DANCE are also named as a source of inspiration. And for the record, at least KILLING JOKE made the topic acceptable in the post-punk scene with their classic ‘Love Like Blood’. Synthesizer sounds and the beautiful voice of singer Famke naturally contribute to that side of VUUR & ZIJDE.
The vocalist is also responsible for various lyrics penned in Frysk (Frisian). The Frisian name and language go back to a North Sea Germanic tribe and survived through the Middle Ages. Today, the Frisian is still spoken in a few Dutch and German areas along the coast up to the Danish border. The other lyrics are written in Dutch.
With “Boezem”VUUR & ZIJDE achieve a perfect balance between their contradictory poles. The aggressive side with elements of black metal that have been transformed into post-black metal contrasts with the light side of shoegaze, post-punk, and wave. Both are entwined in an endless dance that creates fascinating new music, which is at the same beautiful and yet full of thorns – just like a black rose.

You can pre-order “Boezem” at this link.

Produced by Nicky Heijmen
Engineering by Tymon Kruidenier & Bonne van der Wal

Artwork by Famke & Nicky
Layout by Mirko Meerwaldt

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