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Another fantastic offering from Black Elm. The previously released "I" EP was phenomenal and this new track is just as hard hitting, dark, sludgy and complex. Easily one of my favorite underground artists out right now, I'll be waiting with baited breath for the next EP or full length or song or whatever I just can't get enough of what these guys are doing.
Autolatry aren't doing much to pave any new roads with this album, they are however delivering some beautifully put together songs. Each track has it's stand out moments and every composition feels fresh and never devolves into simple, boring tremelo picking for minutes at a time. There is a deft urgency to this record and it's easy to sit through it's rather brief run time without fatigue. To go along with this high energy release is one of the more interesting concepts for an album I've heard since Mastodon dropped Crack the Skye, the lyrics focus on the assimilation of Native Americans into colonial New England and the story contained within greatly enhances the overall album experience. Autolatry haven't blown open any new doors for me but they have earned a loyal fan.
A lot of different elements make up this album and while sometimes the post-metal leanings often times border on overindulgent, you'll be hard pressed to find a more interesting and genuinely experimental black metal record this year. This is an example of a band that is fusing many disparate styles into a single whole that manages to do it right while also standing quite far out from the pack. There is some smoothing out required to truly make this a single cohesive sound, but for a debut, this is really fucking solid and I am eager to see where this band goes. If they continue to evolve and get smarter about how they mix different genres together ION may very well be the next "it" band of black metal.
A potent and moving journey filled with mourning and melancholy. This is how ambient black metal should be done. From the textured vocals to the interesting use of folk instrumentation, Downfall of Nur have struck gold and you owe it to yourself to experience this epic descent into sorrow.
Extremely well crafted and intelligent songs on display with this release. Each band is in top form (especially Autolatry who steal the show) and every song feels organically dynamic and viciously heavy.