Friday, August 25, 2017

review: Ferndal

[review by MMB]
release date: April 21st, 2017
label: Einheit Produktionen
1.Ouverture 02:50
2.Ferndal 09:07
3.Ungelebtes Leben 09:23
4.Arntor, ein Krieger (Windir cover) 06:46
5.In die Freiheit 08:12
6.Ein später Gast 07:13
7.Coda 02:39
total time 46:10
For Ferndal (Germany) making music means writing towards a framework which allows elegance to join extreme metal in order to reflect both perspectives—beauty and extremity—while crafting something of its own. Certain risks are inevitable in such work, given that the audience must in some way be ready to commit to Ferndal. Instant results, immediate gratification and music that follows strict guidelines with the aim of attracting people quickly is not what Ferndal represents. The music most likely will not make sense at first, but it does have enough that you can get, not a complete idea, but sufficiently enough of the music to understand that this will take a while to absorb.
With patience, an interested person can see that for which Ferndal is striving. To bring classical music and black metal together might be a dangerous meeting in some cases, and in others it does not seem genuine, like with projects done artificially with outside musicians, or when it is the result of studio magic with symphonic samples.
How is Ferndal different? Well, they can play the music live without outside musicians because this is not a one-time experiment. They can play the parts that are traditional black metal, their vocalist can do the sung and screamed parts and they do the quieter moments and they have a cellist.
The truth is that this is not easy-listening music. Does the idea of black metal and classical together make you think it's a bad combination? Then, this might not be for you. If you are at least curious, then they have in mind someone like you. Is this pure black metal? Obviously not, but the way that the band sees it, there are plenty of black metal bands if that's what the audience wants in particular. On the other hand, Ferndal does have something creative to offer, something that is a bit different from usual and normal styles that some metal music audiences are accustomed to hearing.
What Ferndal needs from you, most of all, is for you to give them a chance to let them show you what they do, all that they do, and don't get too trapped by ideas about genre or style. Let Ferndal be Ferndal, and you step back, don't jump to conclusions, and just hear this work all the way through, then you will understand better all of what Ferndal is. A quiet and peaceful segment may come across as very different from one with blasting and growling in the same song. In truth, perhaps not all the transitions are that smooth, and maybe that's something that will need more development or attention from the band in the future. At the same time, the music demonstrates a great sense of sophistication in the execution. The band is not lacking ideas nor imagination, and if they can take you along on this adventure, why refuse the invitation? All that will happen is that you will see music as Ferndal does. If you are patient and adventurous, then perhaps you could join this trip.

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