Saturday, December 29, 2018


Vanitas Vanitatvm
release date: September 28th, 2018
label: Prophecy Productions
track listing:
1.Es ist ein sterbendt Liecht 01:00 instrumental
2.SATVRNVS 07:49
3.Λωτοφάγοι 06:09
4.Blutmond 06:25
5.Da brachen aus böse Blattern, am Menschen und am Vieh 06:44
6.VANITAS VANITATVM 02:36 instrumental
7.In Eis und Nacht 05:44
8.Nachzehrer 08:18
9.Als die Welt zur Nacht sich wandt 05:32
10.Νεϰρόπολις 09:34
11.Der Tag an dem das Meer seine Toten freigibt 02:50 instrumental
total time 01:02:41
Helrunar (Germany) now has a total of five studio albums and has been recording music for almost 20 years. This 2018 hour-long German-language work is a presentation that requires listeners with high expectations. The music elaborates on the aesthetics of black metal through the use of tremolo picking, thrash-based riffing, fast/blasting drumming, and the traditional BM vocals that feature a gruff, strong roaring type of rasp. This, in and of itself, is a very attractive sound. However, that is one half of the story only, for the other half consists of the creation of other moods, such as melancholy, foreboding, expectation, contemplation, and more, and all of which are realized in proportion to the black metal.
As examples, here is a bit of information about the last three tracks. Song number nine is a fast and a heavy beginning, with the bass guitar very audible, a generally muscular bottom end, almost with the production mentality of U.S. brutal death metal or of a sludge/doom band, and you don’t hear that many black metal bands sounding this heavy and full. You should hear these fast black metal parts done this way; it might surprise you how good it sounds. Number ten follows. Can black metal have groove? Helrunar proves that it is possible. A midtempo, heavy groove set to a German-language snarl sounds mighty fine. The song picks up a speed to an angry, thrashing tempo, and then dives into a journey of meandering melodies and melancholy, with some clear melodies over the thick rhythm guitars underneath, and ending with some very slow vibes towards the end, segueing into the last track. This last one is several minutes of viola slowly working away to end the album.
It’s not an easy-listening experience, of course, but then that is the whole point of Helrunar. This album is highly recommended for fans of serious, mature black metal. Look into the album if you want to dig into a work that offers a professional-level sound quality, and music that offers some depth in the instrumentation and songwriting. Imagine, if you will, the mentality of Rush, the more expansive thinking, applied to black metal, and Helrunar may make more sense.

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