Blackened blues project ME AND THAT MAN — founded in 2013 by BEHEMOTH frontman Adam "Nergal" Darski — has released a new single, "By The River", off its upcoming album, "New Man, New Songs, Same Shit, Vol. 1", to be released on March 27 via Napalm Records. "By The River" takes you on a drive with the Devil himself, straight through the aberrations of the graveyard and back. Creating a uniquely captivating atmospheric concept, the desert-tinted soundscapes weave throughout the song. Ihsahn of the legendary EMPEROR lends his entrancing vocals to this single and will bewitch the listener. Slow hypnotizing riffs round off the track, while a masterfully escalating guitar solo closes "By The River" on a high note.
Bridging the gap to the vintage atmospheres of the previously released videos, "By The River" is the next ritual of initiation, straight into the distinctive aesthetics and stories ME AND THAT MAN tells on the upcoming album. The peculiarly alienated spaces and desert landscapes framed by an enchanting soundtrack unfold gradually in front of the viewer, taking form in a captivating odyssey through Southern landscapes, cities, villages and empty crossroads. There, maybe even a personal encounter with the Devil himself is possible!
Nergal on "By The River": "When the rumours first emerged of me collaborating with Rob Halford and Ihsahn, the idea sparked imaginations. I guess people would expect a Nergal and Ihsahn partnership to be extreme, but what came out was a bare-bones, blues banger! I've got to tell you; it wasn't an easy sell… at first Ihsahn didn't think there was much he could add — luckily, I knew different and I gave him a simple instruction, 'Have fun.' A week later, I got the track back and I was totally blown away! Considering the status of the man, he is humble and professional to the core. It was my pleasure to work with him and now it's our pleasure to present to you 'By The River'!”
Three years after their initial debut, ME AND THAT MAN has returned with an offering that is indeed different from the first, but in no way less brilliant. The mysterious collective has surpassed themselves with their bewitching new collection — featuring ominous lyricism atop unfiltered blues, gothic-laced folk, outlaw country and Americana-influenced anthems. The enthralling album visits a completely new spectrum of dark desert vibes and sees notable heavy music icons such as Corey Taylor (SLIPKNOT), Brent Hinds (MASTODON), Matt Heafy (TRIVIUM), Ihsahn (EMPEROR) and Sivert Høyem (MADRUGADA) join the pact with the devil. "New Man, New Songs, Same Shit, Vol. 1" is a diversified, dynamic masterpiece that presents Nergal in a completely new light, providing a strong contrast to the heavier sounds of BEHEMOTH. Evil has truly never sounded so good.
Nergal comments: "With the utmost pride and… kind of relief;,I present to you, the second ME AND THAT MAN album — 'New Man, New Songs, Same Shit, Vol. 1'. This time 'round, I wanted to take on a different challenge and curated an album of 11 songs — each with their own character and vibe, alongside the most talented and important individuals across the whole scene. Together, we take trips to the lands of blues, folk, country and even spaghetti western. Only time will tell if we hit the mark, but I deeply believe so. I'm very proud of this piece of work and it has been a monumental task to achieve.
"I would like to thank EACH one of our guests for being part of this project: Mat and Matt, Niklas and Jørgen, Corey, Alan, Addi, Brent, Vegard, Sivert, Anders, Rob, Jerome, Johanna and Nicke. I LOVE you all from here to the moon and back! Without the passion and heart you granted us, this wouldn't have been possible!"
"New Man, New Songs, Same Shit, Vol. 1" track listing:
01. Run With The Devil (feat. Jørgen Munkeby of SHINING)
02. Coming Home (feat. Siver Høyem of MADRUGADA)
03. Burning Churches (feat. Mat McNerney of GRAVE PLEASURES)
04. By The River (feat. Ihsahn of EMPEROR)
06. Surrender (feat. Anders Landelius of DEAD SOUL)
07. Deep Down South (feat. Nicke Anderson of ENTOMBED / Johanna Sadonis of LUCIFER)
08. Man Of The Cross (feat. Jerome Reuter of ROME)
09. You Will Be Mine (feat. Matt Heafy of TRIVIUM)
10. How Come? (feat. Corey Taylor of SLIPKNOT and STONE SOUR) / Brent Hinds of MASTODON)
11. Confession (feat. Niklas Kvarforth of SHINING)
ME AND THAT MAN released its debut album, "Songs Of Love And Death", in 2017 — introducing the world to its unique brand of folk and blues, mixed with hints of outlaw country. The atmospherically dark album provided a strong contrast to BEHEMOTH with its catchy melodies and relaxed rhythms, and gave Nergal space to express his creativity in a different setting. Since its release, the album's lead single, "My Church Is Black", has racked up over 2.5 million streams on Spotify.
Darski has been a fixture in the music industry for years. As the frontman of black/death metal band BEHEMOTH, Darski has been known to preach unholy sermons, praise Satan and sing about explicit blasphemy. Naturally, the next step was to channel those themes into another genre commonly dubbed as the Devil's music — blues. ME AND THAT MAN is exactly that — Nergal's solo project will surprise and bewitch the listener. The visionary creative founded the band in an effort to showcase his true ability to adapt to any genre. In summer 2018, British/Polish rock musician John Porter left ME AND THAT MAN after the band completed a number of gigs in support of "Songs Of Love And Death".
Photo credit: Grzegorz-Gołębiowski