First up is Serpentfyre with “Kointähti”, a dark yet firy black metal assault laced with suitable growls to build on the hostility the band presents much of the time. When not tearing into the listener with highly distorted riffs that linger more in the background, there exists a reliance on the loud bass guitar to maintain a groove that sometimes takes on more of a glorious nordic sensation, something one would expect of the Finnish trio. That emotional toll grows a little more grand on “Servo Além-Dor” from Dolentia. The enthusiastic, rawer sounding performance carries itself with an afterlife draped in white, as if empowering into the next world before being dragged kicking and screaming into the doom laden darkened nightmare that is eternal damnation by the half-way point. The raspier vocals give way to deep, sometimes altered gutturals backed by a ritualistic drum pattern that marches you forward to a return to the light that is unwarranted. Truthfully, had the performance ended with that creeping pace, the ending would have had a far better impact musically.
But, even with “Servo Além-Dor” carrying on a bit too long, this Split with Serpentfyre is a solid one none-the-less. Two superb acts in the black metal world come together to bring one new song a piece for their respective fan bases, and it works out quite well. While the overall atmospheres have a decent amount of variety, there’s still enough of a similarity to make the two seem cut from the same cloth, prime to expose those unaware to each other’s existence properly. If you haven’t heard of these two bands yet, or are familiar and just want some new tunes, then this new Split release is one you’ll want to check out.