(The Dutch black metal band Asagraum released their second album digitally on September 13th and Edged Circle Productions will release physical editions on September 27th. What follows is a review of it by TheMadIsraeli.)
Over the last few years I’ve really made a turn-around on black metal as a style and have come to love it, but I’ve only settled on a particular bent. It has to really engage in that very meta-spiritual vibe of melancholic and enigmatic melody while retaining a sense of brutality and mercilessness. This has led me to more concise, more “lean” (for the lack of a better word) riff-driven black metal like Old Man’s Child, Nidingr, Naglfar, Dark Fortress, and so on. I like my black metal to definitely strive for peak musicianship, instead of relying on the gimmicks and the edginess the style sort of has a reputation for. If you can channel the sensation that your music is an attempt at invoking some kind of ritual or summoning, then that’s even better. That’s the sort of ritualistic take on black metal I’m very fond of.
Which brings me to Asagraum.