System Morgue


SYSTEM MORGUE was started in 2006 as a project to experiment with industrial noise sampling; its first record, «Necrostud», was released one year later on the net label Qulture. A modified version of the track «Reactor 4» was also included on a compilation released by the label Heliophagia during the winter solstice of 2006. The overall sound of the album can be characterized as digital harsh noise with elements of drone and dark ambient. The project’s next EP, «Inlet» followed in the same vein, although the sound became softer and more rhythmic.

The year 2008 saw the release of the project’s second full-length album, «Rise 6». Compared to the previous release, the record was more varied stylistically, and used live instruments, particularly the bass guitar.

Two years later, SYSTEM MORGUE releases «Hekatombaion» (Heliophagia 2010, cassette), a four-track concept album exploring ancient ritual hecatombs and the month Hekatombaion, the hottest month of the year. Recorded during the anomalously hot Moscow summer of 2010, the album featured a hard harsh-noise sound and elements of ritual music. One of the tracks was later made into a music video by the Moscow-based video artist Kol Belov. The same year, the net label Qulture released SYSTEM MORGUE’s next album «Nieh», a quiet and relaxed drone-ambient record.

In 2011, the project produced a number of records. The first one, «Malavaggo» (released on the net label Katabasia), was based on the texts of the Pali edition of the Dhammapada, a collection of poetic utterances attributed to the Buddha Shakyamuni. The Pali text on the first track of the album is recited by NAJNAS, a long-time collaborator of the project and the founder of Heliophagia. Then came a noise record, «T dissect», followed by a trilogy of drone albums: «Inkeri», «Neige» and «Metempsychosis». The eponymous track from «Inkeri» (an album that explores the artist’s vision of the city of St. Petersburg) was later released on lathe-cut vinyl. Finally, a split album was recorded with the Latvian artist MACABRO and released on the Russian net label DNA Production.

Next year saw the release of «Exhaust» (2012), an experimental noise album where all the tracks were recorded using DIY synthesizers designed by Eduard «Papa Srapa» Srapionov. Each track was accompanied by an art piece drawn by Kol Belov; a music video for the track «Tigmata» was also created by Kol. Finally, SYSTEM MORGUE capped off 2012 with an hour-long drone ambient release, «Wintermute/Wound».

In 2013, DNA Production issues two SYSTEM MORGUE albums («lvx.abyssvs» and «Gegenstrom»), which marked a shift toward guitar-based sound; the «HLGML5643» EP, released same year, also strongly gravitated towards guitar ambient.

In 2014, SYSTEM MORGUE releases «Noyade», a digital drone-ambient record. Next comes «Feu», an album inspired by the writings of Ilya Masodov and Charles Baudelaire; it was published as a four-panel digipak CD (with art by Kol Belov) by the St. Petersburg-based label Zhelezobeton. The same year, SYSTEM MORGUE establishes Noyade Records, an independent record label whose first release is a SYSTEM MORGUE/LUNAR ABYSS split «Dunke af Mosen», a concept record that turns to forests and swamps for inspiration. Finally, the December of 2014 also sees SYSTEM MORGUE’s first live performance, which takes place in Moscow during the experimental/drone music festival Drema.

Noyade Records follows up with a cassette compilation that brings together 1000SCHOEN, AIDAN BAKER, GHOST REFLECTION and HAKOBUNE; the compilation also has SYSTEM MORGUE participating with the track «Rätsel». SYSTEM MORGUE’s next full length release is «Sommeil», an album that builds upon the concept of «Feu»; the album’s final track, «Un Grand Sommeil Noir», sees the project turn toward a drone-rock sound for the first time in its history, and employ a more straightforward drums-and-bass-guitar approach.

Collaborating with the underground culture zine Katabazine, SYSTEM MORGUE then records a 3-track album «Niger.Ferrum.Carcer». Themed upon the work of Philip K. Dick, it is released as a musical supplement to the second issue of the zine. Next, the Heliophagia label produces what is probably the project’s bleakest release yet: «Brume», an album inspired by the concept of «the Eternal November» and augmented with artwork by el sol fúnebre.

The year 2016 begins with Noyade Records releasing two mini-albums by SYSTEM MORGUE: «Léthé» and «Test de Flamme», the sound of both based on ambient guitar soundscapes. Over the course of the year, the label also puts out SYSTEM MORGUE’s «Futilité», «Indifférence» and «Discontinuité», a trio of thematically grouped releases that range stylistically from post-metal/doom to post-rock and dronegaze. More releases follow: «Escarre» (a full-length drone-doom album), «Rien De Neuf» (a post-rock record), and then a split with noise artist IATEMYSELF.

The label Pantheon releases SYSTEM MORGUE’s «Caillou» (a record dedicated to the work of Paul Eluard), and the Italian label SOVN Records puts out «Moea» – a cassette release that has SYSTEM MORGUE collaborating with the French musician BIRTAWIL. The year is culminated by «Cohérence», a compilation made up of SYSTEM MORGUE tracks that came out in 2015-2016 on various thematic collections.

SYSTEM MORGUE begins 2017 with a release of the full-length «Voies» (also on Pantheon), and the EPs «Nous Sommes Seuls» and «Naufrage». A split with ACCENT AIGU named «Sand Textures» follows, and then a guitar-ambient LP «Aléa».