UK mega-heavies Pijn and Conjurer teamed up to release a four-song collaboration called Curse These Metal Hands. Originally intended as a collaboration set for ArcTanGent, it’s far from what most would expect from these bands putting their heads together: Rather than the gut-rumbling, utterly contemptuous Conjurer, or the ambient, delicate, layered post-rock of Pijn, this brainchild is soaring, triumphant, and specifically intended to induce joy -- both in the band members and the listener. In a time when it feels like everyone worldwide could use a bit of joy, the two bands have set out to show the heavy music can be a useful vehicle for doing so.
“Heavy music is absolutely one of the most joyous art forms. Even the grisliest, most morbid and spiritually bleak black metal band should still bring people together in celebration,” says Pijn’s Nick Watmough. “And if it isn’t -- if it’s pushing people apart, or excluding people -- then it’s got it all fucking wrong.
Conjurer’s Dan Nightingale agrees: “I guess you could say [heavy music is] not typically associated with joy, but that’s not to say it’s an inherently negative style of music either. Of course heavy music can be joyous, there are tons of sonically happy heavy albums out there – Kvelertak’s debut and Torche’s Harmonicraft being just two examples – but at the end of the day, even if you get something positive out of something as haunting and visceral as Lingua Ignota, then that says a lot about what heavy music has to offer. It’s what you get out of it that matters, regardless of whether it’s in a major or minor key, and I think because of the greater focus on emotion and catharsis that heavy music has, that’s why people within those circles are generally more in touch with themselves and other people.”