Anonymity has been one of extreme music’s time-honored, though shopworn, traditions since even before the first wave of black metal. It has endured through a succession of major and far-lesser-known acts spanning continents and decades, in part, because anonymity taps that fearful part of the imagination in which these walls of haunting sound flourish. Furthermore, this tactic subtly returns to the music snob in all of us, by letting the music speak for itself. However, so common is anonymity that it has become an officious self-parody in instances like Ghost, where estranged bandmates battle it out in court over money, intellectual property and identity.
The Australian group Grave Upheaval seemingly pursues obscurity intentionally. About five years ago, the band released an album titled simply Untitled. It conveys no lineup information and its tracks are titled in a fashion that is as bland as one can get, e.g. Roman numeral titles. Now, roughly five years after Untitled, Grave Upheaval is back.
With what, you ask? Untitled, of course. Not Untitled II. Just Untitled. Not a good sign, perhaps. Continue reading