This Sydney based four piece have a member who looks a little like Devin Townsend, circa the latter stages of Strapping Young Lad’s career. Ie. the ‘skullet’ era. If the Canadian genius is indeed an influence on Kunvuk, then some his craziness has certainly rubbed off on them. It’s a pity some of his class and songcraft haven’t as well.
The problem with Immute: Jackals is that it’s just a little too wacked out for its own good. To the extent that the schizophrenic nature of Kunvuk’s delivery seems a little contrived, as if they’ve gone out of their way during their songwriting sessions to warp things as much as possible, as opposed to simply letting things flow. I’d go so far as to say that they made a conscious decision when they were forming the band to be as weird as they possibly can, in an attempt to set themselves apart from the pack. Which is, of course, admirable and understandable since that ‘pack’ is seemingly a bottomless pit of lookalike, soundalike bands these days. But it makes much of the album pretty close to an incomprehensible mess, with little discernable direction, to these ears.
Fans, and indeed most likely the band itself, will probably be screaming ‘you just don’t get it’ at their computer screens right now. And for their part, they’d be absolutely correct. I don’t. I just believe it’s eminently possible to be weird and quirky and still be reasonably coherent. Check out a band like Melbourne’s Five Star Prison Cell for proof. Stylistically all over the shop, they ultimately hone things into a discernable whole.
Even the production seems a little primitive for my tastes. Again, some people will dig this, but these guys are seriously making it hard for themselves in the greater scheme of things.
It’s certainly not the most awful thing you will ever hear, this is a strictly ‘niche’ release. Kunvuk will hopefully find a small but loyal following for themselves that can possibly sustain some sort of career for a few years or more.
(The Light of Damnation)