Sunday, September 30, 2012

Nokturnal Mortum - Голос Сталі

Genre : Folk black metal

I still can't get over how awesome this release is. And still, I had hard times digging it, because of the somehow dissonant sound of some folkish parts in the beginning of the album. Once you get over (and past) this part, everything is impressive here. Not only for the actual folk parts, but the black metal elements featured here are totally stunning. Huge guitar playing, impressive riffs and solos, powerful drumming, strong vocals (even clean ones which are amazing), and on top of all this, such clever songwriting... Moving from song to song is discovering a new masterpiece, or a new all-time classic. Don't believe me, heh? Well, enough words then.

Personal highlights : Україна, Валькирия, Біла Вежа.

Follow Nokturnal Mortum on Facebook.
Buy merch on their website.

Saturday, September 29, 2012

Darkenhöld - Echoes from the stone keeper

Genre : Black metal

Darkenhöld returns with their second full-length, and undoubtedly, it's more atmospheric than the debut. In a way, it's also less aggressive, and vocals are not as loud as before in the mix. Whatever. It's still incredibly technical and melodic. Main strength of this album, to me, is how many melodies and dynamic riffs it includes compared to what's usual in the black metal scene. It still has this somehow medieval, mystical touch, probably because of the synth lines... yet the best work lies in guitars and drums. That's quite cool considering how proeminent those instruments are in a black metal track. And thanks God (or anywho else), synths are kept in the background. Therefore, this new release is intense, and it bears no monotony or repetitive parts, and that makes Echoes from the stone keeper a really dynamic, straigthforward, powerful and intense album, even with its many acoustic interludes. You may be a bit sad not having louder vocals here, but you will definitely enjoy it anyway!

Personal highlights : Echoes from the stone keeper, Mesnie Hellequin.

Stream Echoes from the stone keeper on Bandcamp.
Follow Darkenhöld on Facebook.
Buy merch on Bigcartel.

Other reviews from Darkenhöld:

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Djur - В Потоках Хаоса Кровей

Genre : Black metal

Usually, when black metal looses its atmospheric vein, I tend to like it less. However, Djur somehow made something catchy without using acoustic lines. I'm not sure why, but I'd say that the melodic riffs are responsible of this. Or maybe the intense, non-linear drumming style? Probably the agressive, wild and powerful vocals too. Anyway, Djur surely know how to play black metal. Songs deliver an awesome  lot of intensity, everybody does his job quite well, and compositions are nice enough to sublimate the skills. On top of this, add some very nice production, keeping things audible and raw at the same time. Really an album worth a listen if you enjoy agressive stuff.

Personnal highlights : Дивизия Djur, В Потоках Хаоса Кровей.

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Saturday, September 1, 2012

Crone - Endless midnight

Genre : Instrumental ambient

Technically, this is drone. But I don't like drone much, and I like this, so it must be a bit different... Probably drone-esque post-rockish instrumental dark ambient or something like that. You're still with me? Right! To tell the truth, Endless midnight was a really good surprise from my first listen. It's relaxing, yet really dark, and it depicts a really dense atmosphere, with some kind of gloomy night, urban landscapes, and a hint of light behind all this. In a way, it's in perfect relation with its artwork, for once. So what can you expect here? Well, apart from guitars and various weird noises, there's almost nothing. That's why it's obviously drone. Yet, as opposed to usual drone, there are many melodic lines, some of which being really worth a clap. Usually, songs just keep building over and over during ten minutes, adding more and more atmosphere as time flies, starting from almost nothing. It's the kind of album you either love or hate, but it's definitely "ethereal soundscapes".

How about a couple listens? Endless midnight and Ghost city set the tone very well, just try. And follow Crone on Facebook.