Valo Pohjoisesta

Anmeldt av Jens Nepper
(Immortal Frost Productions, 2018)

Karakter: 4.5/6

Azaghal album cover.jpgFollowing a majestic and orchestrated introductory piece, Azaghal's filthy and malevolent black metal explodes from the speakers and never really lets up in terms of aggression and intensity. These Finnish scumbags have been around for quite some time and released way too many demos, EPs, and albums for me to list here, but this unsettling 10-track effort entitled “Valo Pohjoisesta” is their most consistent output yet.

I dig the way in which Azaghal weave epic melodies and truly pummeling riffs together to such great effect, which is perfectly illustrated by the title track and “Ajaton” – probably the two highlights of the disc along with album closer “Taivann…” now that I think about it. Even though some of the tunes more or less hang on only a few riffs, there is depth and diversity to them, which entails that the songs are easy to absorb and digest and yet they contain a sufficient number of nuances and subtle details to warrant repeated listens. The musicianship is good, and the production is certainly fitting for a black metal opus of this particular kind.

“Valo Pohjoisesta” is a nasty piece of work, it is steeped in a blackened atmosphere that is as thick as tar, and even though the record never attains those bone-chilling heights that other black metal masterpieces do, it is without question solid and morbidly enjoyable from start to finish. There is confidence and focus to the proceedings and although the band are following a slightly traditional formula as opposed to breaking new ground, this disc is worth exploring if you are a fan of the genre.

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