Posted by Nick Skog on Saturday, March 8, 2014 Under: Album Reviews
From: Volumes of Sin Webzine
Published: March 8, 2014
German band Frigoris received their start in 2007 and soon thereafter released their demo, Morgenröte, in 2008. In 2009 Dominik Winter did away with the three other members of his band due to internal differences. He formulated a new group, which consisted of two additional bodies, for the debut full-length album, Nach dem Kreig, which was released in 2010. After an additional line-up change which places three newcomers into the ranks of Frigoris, Wind has been released as the band's second full-length effort. Does the constancy in change benefit the outcome of this material?
The album opens appropriately with the soft sound of rain that's followed up by whooshing winds and chirping birds; soon to follow is the picking and strumming of an acoustic guitar and gentle whispering vocals. "Windgeflüster" is indeed the perfect opening track to this material as it sets a warm, distilled atmosphere for the oncoming content. Wind is a great example of an album that has cover art that completely suits the nature and ambience of music as a whole, and the listener will find themselves hearing the subtle sounds of nature intricately laid within varying tracks.
There is a defining folkish Pagan feel to the music that is immediately noticeable come "Zwischenwelten", the first real taste of the content that the listener will experience. Most of the tempos and song compositions are upbeat, somewhat joyous and make use of warm sharp chords and frets; this is akin to the 'summer black metal' quality that bands like Woods of Ypres and early Agalloch created. More notable is the ability that the members of Frigoris possess to effectively interlace subdued acoustic guitars with black metal blast beats, electric riffs and double bass kicks; this is done in such a refined manner that it sounds absolutely normal and comfortable, but it's a feature that is rarely heard in other albums.
That being said, the material does come with its share of predictably tedious black metal moments with bouts of extended tremolo picking and blast beat drumming, such as what is heard in "Frühlingsnacht", but these moments are few and barely hinder the recording. In fact, more often than not, the content is filled with blow-you-away moments like the full onslaught in "Im Keim ertrunken". This track starts out tame with a thought provoking acoustic introduction that bursts into ravenous black metal riffs and a spine chilling growl that's an absolute must hear. As well, "Ode an verlorene Seelen" is a memorable song in that it utilizes audio snippets of a woman speaking in English (the rest of the content is in German) about Christianity over both acoustics and electrics in the same manner that may remind one of V: Halmstad by Shining.
Even though they're sung entirely in German (thusly I have no idea what is being said without using a translator), the accomplished harsh growl vocals are clear and articulate to such a high standard that it rivals any surrounding black metal acts. Both guitarists put on a wonderful performance and the interwoven acoustics and electrics are absolutely mesmerizing; the album feels well rounded as a whole, but especially in the regard of utilizing both aforesaid elements. The drumming is decent, although comprised of nothing outstanding. The majority of the drum beats and patterns are generic but each beat is tight and fluid; the drummer does a great job in following the on-a-whim tempo changes that spike and drop throughout the entirety of the content.
If you missed Wind in 2013 then you should be doing as I am and smacking yourself for letting it fall under your radar. It's an absolute must hear for any fans of bands such as early Agalloch, Woods of Ypres, Helrunar and V:Halmstad era Shining. The album is warm and thought provoking with intriguingly creative acoustic segments that are wrapped with folk compositions and weighted with the quick and dirtiness of black metal. Check it out for yourself over at the Hypnotic Dirge Records Bandcamp, and make sure to support the band if you enjoy what you hear!
Reviewed by: Villi Thorne
In : Album Reviews
Tags: frigoris wind nach dem krieg melodic folk black metal atmospheric post-rock