The concept for Rope Sect came from an idea for a dystopian future story. It told us the story of a sect out in the woods, celebrating the fast approaching end of the world. A sect with draconian rules where the gallows followed any violations of its strict laws.
That summed up the theme of the band. The 2 EPS ‘Personae Integratae’ and ‘Proselytes’ followed as its first outpourings in 2017. Sonically, it harked back to old post punk days of the early eighties with bands like Joy Division or Bauhaus. They quickly found like-minded brethren in the likes of Grave Pleasures and King Dude, both of whom they shared the stage with.
Those support slots led to a collaboration on Rope Sect’s debut album ‘The Great Flood’ with Matthew McNerney, the enigmatic frontman of Grave Pleasures, formerly known as Beastmilk and incidentally also of the Finnish forest dwellers of Hexvessel. McNerney has contributed both lyrics and vocals to two of their songs. Stylistically, Grave Pleasures and Rope Sect have a lot in common, both sharing a death rock and early goth ethos as a common root.
This subgenre is a bit of a sidestep for the label, whose output is usually drenched deeply in one or the other form of extreme metal. ‘The Great Flood’ might be very low on metal, its distinctive style of gothic punk rock is as bleak and abyssal as any death or black artist on the roster.
This bleakness, however, is looming beneath the surface. At first glance, you have up tempo guitar rock that you could actually dance to. The songs themselves are often deceivingly uplifting. Vocals, rather than being an abysmal grunt or a banshee-like scream, recall primarily the godfathers of goth as well as his aforementioned pal McNerney with a touch of millennial Katatonia. It is this despondent delivery that drags these danceable tunes down to the depths of despair.
As a curious teaser before the release of the album, he released the track ‘Lava’ which somehow has not made it onto the record. It is a great track, although in a slighty different, softer vein than the debut, but it is definitely worth hearing. He did a couple other of these in-between singles, namely ‘Handsome Youth’ and ‘Quietus Abrased’ which you might want to check out as well. These are songs that definitely fit the concept of the rope sect but maybe not of ‘The Great Flood’ itself. “Venerate the rope! Fear the rope!”
Release Date: August 12 2020
Label: Iron Bonehead
- Divide Et Impera
- Rope of the Just
- Prison of You
- The Underground Paradise
- Flood Flower
- Non Serviemus
- Dilluvian Darkness