Over the course of four long winters the Alaskan black metal duo They Leapt From Burning Windows recorded the six tracks that are now set for release on June 26th in a new demo (the band’s second one). Though the northern hemisphere is now opening into summer, these songs descend into cold winds and grey days, into an ice-bound dimension where bitterness and despondency reign. Yet in capturing those dark emotions fueled by dark seasons, the music becomes incredibly vibrant and spectacularly intense — as you’re about to discover.
Of these six new tracks, which together consume half an hour of running time, “Ceo Dlúth” (which seems to be Irish for “dense fog”) is the longest by a significant margin. But even though it comes in at more than 10 minutes in length, it is so electrifying — so breathtaking — that the time flies by. When it ends, you may be left wishing it had been longer.
Lyrically, “Ceo Dlúth” takes us from September into December within subarctic wastelands, where dead mountain monoliths loom over icy landscapes and the snow has swallowed all sound — and where the protagonist stands beneath the Bloodmoon with arms thrown wide, waiting for the stars to fall, but knowing that he must return home, “Trapped in this world / In this time / Where life has become frozen / While the rest of the world burns.”
The music is both raw and melodic, both pulse-pounding and enthralling. It immediately hurls the listener into a storm of deep thrumming bass, hammering snare, crashing cymbals, booming toms, and a dense wall of flaming riffage that sears and soars. Wild, tormented vocals shriek to be heard through that maelstrom of high-voltage instrumentation. Flickering leads dart, spiral, and squall through the blaze in flares of ecstasy and viciousness.
When the tumult subsides, otherworldly notes ring out in moaning and glimmering harmonies, as voices issue solemn reflections in song. The intensity builds again through rhythmic detonations, increasingly intense riffing, and scorching vocals, all of which propel the music to new heights of breathtaking intensity, and it reaches heights of sweeping grandeur as well. Feverish arpeggios channel delirious anguish and pain over titanic drum blows, livid bass tones, and larynx-shredding vocals, and the guitar itself seems to wail and cry out in desperation, as the vocals divide between monstrous roars and wrenching screams.
Seemingly out of nowhere, the song marks this duo as a startling talent, and this demo as a must-listen experience for fans of black metal.
This new demo will be released on cassette tape by the Alaskan black art collective Lycaean Triune, as well as digitally, and it’s available for pre-order now in both formats. It was composed and recorded at Unsafe Space in Anchorage, Alaska, and was mixed/mastered by Will Killingsworth (One Master, Tomb Mold).
THEY LEAPT FROM BURNING WINDOWS: