|Ambient Rock, Melodic Black Metal
March 8th, 2011
Release length: 46:54
First of all, while some of the band’s later releases are classified more as Ambient Rock, this release takes those ideas from that style, and meshes them perfectly with emotionally driven Melodic Black Metal. The vocals have great energy in them, that also portray the proper emotion for the other dismal and somber atmosphere of the track. The title track is mostly traditional Melodic Black Metal, but performed in a manner to set up a depressing, melancholic atmosphere that goes beyond the grimmest of Black Metal atmospheres commonly associated with acts of frostbitten regions, such as Immortal. The music is haunting, captivating the listener with it’s pleading vocal approach that is often furious, and yet can sometimes come off scared or drastic. The song does incorporate a brief moment of acoustic guitar, which seems a little out of place but is at least transitioned too nicely and doesn’t really cause any damage. However, the emotion of this song won’t prepare you for what’s to come, as “Der Wunde Trieb” really lays it on with a crushing, somber, depressive atmosphere that is only enhanced by the violins that are performed in the background. Again, the vocals are very appropriate for the proper times, coming off harsh for most of the song, but when necessary, they sound frantic and drastic. All of this causes the music to envelope the listener right from the start and weave a very promising path for the rest of the release, refusing to let go as the material becomes more sinister through “Der Wunde Trieb” and beyond.
As much as the album becomes more sinister, it also seems to become much darker and creepier at times. “Wolfpuls” utilizes varying degrees of melancholy during the electrical instrument parts of the songs, but during the somber, more acoustic pieces, it feels dark and sinister, often very creepy due to the manner the instruments are played with the violin, but half way through the song, the slower parts begin to feel more Pagan, as if listening to a nature-themed Folk Metal release. The track has many atmospheric jumps, and some seem to be a bit overkill at times, but many of them work out well to create a very eccentric yet evil cascade. Sadly, atop of that, not all songs really have that emotional connection, but are still really good, such as the following track “Wandel Geschehe”, the first song to really not have as strong an emotional connection with the listener, but seems to continue pushing that natural/Pagan atmosphere that was more then likely taken from the band’s geographical roots, and actually becomes a rather interesting addition to the song.
Aside the latter focus on a more nature oriented atmosphere pulling away from the raw emotional energy of the release, there’s nothing else to really say negatively about this album. Some may wind up being put off by the rather crisp production quality, but that works well in capturing the heavy, intense Black Metal being performed, as well as the beautiful acoustic and violins that appear throughout some songs. This actually largely contributes to the album’s beauty and emotion, so in the long run it’s a much strong production approach instead of relying on raw recording mechanics to try to get the point across of how the listener should feel. While these sections aren’t necessarily interpreted in many way, the music can still have loose interpretations of how ther band is projecting those emotions. Some may find the more nature-oriented sections to be passages of a serene state of mind against that of the creepy, often melancholic emotions given. And in a sense, that seems to be the perfect explanation of these little sections. But, the band still manages to create the music in a way that they still tell you how you should interpret the music, though it’s more of a soft, subtle hint then flat saying that the song should make you depressed. The closing track “Erst deine TrÃ¤ne lÃ¶scht den Bran” is the perfect example, as the music can be taken many ways, but yet the band seems to nudge your more towards an uplifting spiritual beauty then any other emotion you can take from the song. That is perhaps the most impressive feat of all with this recording.
Fans of Dornenreich pretty much know what to expect from this group, and if you enjoyed the previous releases, this is simply a must have. While the music does seem to lose some of it’s emotional pull in some tracks, the songs are solid, and constantly present an atmosphere that works with the listener in many gripping ways. From beauty to insantiy to melancholic creepiness, the band seems to really focus on weaving all of these elements together to create a rather sprawling album of emotional exploration through Black Metal, but in a very subtle manner that speaks volumes for the band’s ability to not go over the top, yet still create a piece like this.
01. Flammenmensch – 4:57
02. Der wunde Trieb – 5:06
03. Tief in Land – 5:02
04. Wolfpuls – 7:23
05. Wandel Geschehe – 6:24
06. FÃ¤hrte der Nacht – 4:50
07. In Allem Weben – 5:17
08. Erst deine TrÃ¤ne lÃ¶scht den Brand – 7:55
|Initial Pressing Score: 9/10
Digital review copy of this release provided by Prophecy Productions.