Black metal mainstays Winterfylleth have proven to be masters of their craft for some time, perhaps deserving to be better known outside of the black metal scene.
Two years after their folk-inspired divergence on their previous effort, ‘The Hallowing Of Heirdom’, the band’s seventh full-length studio album, ‘The Reckoning Dawn’, is now upon us.
‘Misdeeds Of Faith’ starts off with their melodic but pummelling black metal, and the use of multi-layered vocals in the chorus adds an extra layer of character, before moving to a section that has an immediate gallop to it, lifting the song greatly.
‘A Hostile Fate (The Wayfarer, Pt. 4)’ is a little on the faster side and is also strong, but we reach an early highlight with ‘Absolved In Fire’. Beginning with an acoustic guitar and strings, it slowly builds into an invigorating number that possesses as much intensity as it does tension.
The title-track is also another highlight, and builds from blast-beat sections into a grand-sounding conclusion, with some solid dual-guitar work to boot. ‘A Greatness Undone’ has more of a swinging feel to it and has another grand section, and the clean section is a welcome highlight.
This is without question a very good Winterfylleth album. It’s clear that that they’ve managed to meld the sound that they’re mainly known for with the acoustic forays they leant on heavily on their last LP. They can clearly master many aspects of black metal, among other genres. The acoustic interlude of ‘Betwixt Two Crowns’ is certainly majestic, but you feel like this could’ve been made into a full song and developed even further. All of this record is performed to a very high standard, but there’s still room to push the envelope.
‘Yielding The March Law’ comes in incredibly strongly, and is probably the best display of the take on black metal that they’re known for, coming in sounding as furious as it gets. The layered vocals from earlier on also make a return, and those are also other aspects that could have been honed in on a little more.
But, with ‘In Darkness Begotten’, Winterfylleth end the record with a bang. Undoubtedly the penultimate tracks are the album’s peak, and the aforementioned song has another use of multi-layered vocals, utilising tension that’s never quite released, but closing the album to great effect as the musical backing gradually fades out.
With only minor areas for improvement, Winterfylleth have made with ‘The Reckoning Dawn’ an album that serves as a strong showcase of everything that they can do.