Review from Cosmos Gaming

Posted by Nick Skog on Friday, June 14, 2013 Under: Album Reviews
From: Cosmos Gaming
June 13, 2013
Original Link

Germany’s Frigoris started off as your fairly standard pagan/black metal band, but over time has transitioned into a melodic black metal group that places emphasis on soaring melodic passages and an entrancing atmosphere. It’s not that different from the transition some of the other acts in the genre have gone through as they have reached for more expansive ideas, but Frigoris’ sophomore effort Wind goes for a slightly different approach. The wall of sound that is created throughout each of these songs skews a bit towards the mellower side, making this an introspective release that listeners can easily lose themselves in.

Despite the emphasis on mellower instrumentation, this doesn’t mean that Wind is completely lacking bite. There are some moments where the tonality heads into harsher territory and touches upon some aggressive ideas, but the overall focus is often on material that has a drearier yet strangely inviting feel. Like some of the black metal acts that have taken a turn towards folk and other melodic directions Frigoris often spends much of their time building up somber melodies that reach a breathtaking level of atmosphere, creating a somber and reflective feeling. Rather than maintaining a wall of distortion, acoustic guitar work is often the driving element that establishes these melodic soundscapes and it is the interplay between the distorted and acoustic instrumentals that helps to make these tracks really make an impact. It is also worth mentioning that even though the majority of the song lengths hit the seven or eight minute mark, the instrumentals never become repetitive and it feels like the build-ups are able to use every second to reach stunning climaxes.

Dominik Winter handles the vocal work throughout Wind, and his style is a raspier scream that cuts through the melodic instrumentals and instantly grab your attention. There are some moments where he lets up into a whisper, and this not only mixes in well with the screams but provides the vocal performance with the same kind of harsh and melodic mix as the instrumentals. The track “Frühlingsnacht” includes clean female vocals, which I believe are from bassist Melanie Schmitz (who left the group before the album’s release) and the much softer performance is part of what made this number really stay with me. While Schmitz may be gone, my hope is that as Frigoris continues they are able to find another way to utilize the occasional burst of melodic pitches as it fits their overall sound quite well. Overall, I really liked what the vocals had to offer but the one issue that did pop up was the integration of an audio clip on “Ode an verlorene Seelen”, which seemed to completely dominate the material and proved to be more of a distraction than a solid addition to the track.

This type of melodically oriented black metal that spends just as much time on atmosphere as it does on harsher assaults has always been quite appealing to me, but Frigoris is one of the better acts I have come across recently. Wind’s ability to hit some harsher passages and then transition right into very atmospheric, somber melodies works quite well and unlike some of the other releases of this type the songs don’t feel too dragged out. I really get the impression that this album has helped the band to come into their own, and it will be interesting to see what direction they head in as they continue to evolve.

Reviewed by: Chris Dahlberg

In : Album Reviews 

Tags: frigoris wind atmospheric melodic black metal fen imperium dekadenz post-rock woods of ypres dominik winter 


Released: June 7, 2013
500 Copies
Atmospheric Black Metal