On September 15th of this year the Italian label Black Mass Prayers will release the striking debut album of Svart Vinter, an extreme metal band that combines the songwriting and instrumental talents of Luca Gagnoni and Emanuela Marino from Rome, and the terrifying vocals of Argentinian performer Noctem Aeternus.
Here at NCS we know of Gagnoni and Marino from their work in Veil of Conspiracy, whose latest album we premiered and praised here last year. There were “blackened” ingredients in that music, along with elements of doom and death metal, but in Svart Vinter‘s first full-length, Mist, they’ve indulged their black metal influences to a much greater degree.
Yet in Svart Vinter they continue to demonstrate, as they did through Veil of Conspiracy, the capacity to wholly immerse listeners in spellbinding (and shattering) music of great emotional power. That will become evident when you hear the song we’re premiering today, whose name is “Gale“.
Both the music and the lyrics of this new song are apocalyptic, foretelling an ominous and wrenching future — and one that’s already taking shape.
The phrase “black torment” repeatedly appears in the song’s lyrics, and both the music and the vocals channel that very feeling. True to the song’s name, the music comes in immense, sweeping waves that engulf the senses, rising in feverish agony and descending into dark despair. The riffing pierces the mind and roils it, while simultaneously creating a sense of terrible splendor on a vast scale.
In contrast to those dense, gale-driven cascades, the sharp crack of the snare drum is slow and measured (albeit with hurtling double-kicks below). Blast-beats don’t erupt, and then only briefly to further drive the song’s intensity, until near the end.
You’ll see the words in the video, but you could decipher them anyway, even though Noctem Aeternus expels them in serrated-edge screams and horrid roars, which themselves embody a kind torment and hopeless suffering (which reach their heights in aching wails). Yet there is condemnation and anger in the words and the voice too, which are matched in a segment of the song where the riffing slashes and sears, swaggers and slashes.
Thoughts of old Emperor, Satyricon, and Immortal might come to mind as you listen. The old school second-wave influences are clearly present, but channeled in pathways of unusual power.
All the songs on Mist were written (including the lyrics) and arranged by Luca Gagnoni and Emanuela Marino.The album was produced, mixed, and mastered by Luca Gagnoni at VoC Studio, and he was also responsible for the drum programming.
Black Mass Prayers will release the album in a limited vinyl CD-R edition and digitally. But although the release date isn’t until September 15th, the physical edition is so limited that it will likely sell out soon, so don’t delay. Pre-orders are being launched today.
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