Witch’s Heart – The Harrowing

Harrows Hymn is actually a pretty damn cool industrial black ambient piece, and the desolate beauty is a surprisingly pleasant to listen to psychedelic, quiet, sludgly black metalish track. Unfortunately the rest of the album is boring, mindlessly repetitive industrial sludge noise that tries to make itself out to be experimental and satanic. It’s an interesting take on blackened sludge, but interesting does not equate to good every time.



Misþyrming – Söngvar elds og óreiðu ALBUM REVIEW

I was hyped as fuck for this album. I heard everyone praise it, I saw the ambient tagged as dark ambient (which I’m always excited about, yet usually disappointed by), and most of all, I saw that cover. Can we just all take a moment to appreciate just how great of a cover that is? It’s black as fuck, but it doesn’t look silly at all. It gets the point across without being hyper explicit. I’d even say it’s really artistic. Probably one of the best album covers I’ve ever seen if I do say so myself. Anyway, here I was excited as hell for this album. Problem was I never got a hold on a link to it until recently. For background, I usually have backlogs that are pretty long (my current limit is 50), and I go through things in alphabetical order, and typically there are many more bands at the beginning of the alphabet, so I went through 30+ albums just to get this in my current iteration of the backlog. So I have all of this anticipation building up, and today I finally got a chance to it today. So what did I think? Well at first, I was really disappointed. I mean, it was ok. I had heard that it was pretty much just standard black metal that was executed really well, and while I suppose that’s true I was expecting something that was probably not possible to fulfill. So I listen to the first three tacks thinking this is probably about a flat 8, maybe 7.75. Then my friend asks if I want to get some food, so I oblige. I come back around 45 minutes later, and go back to listening at around the 4th track. This was the first of two solo ambient tracks in the album. And that’s where everything clicked. This new band from Iceland with a helluva name to pronounce does some of the best black ambient I’ve heard. I’ve always had this dream of if Bathory had been slightly more atmospheric and had more ambient tracks in their albums like they did for the intro and closing to their first two albums. Well, now it’s a reality. The instrumentals on this album are admitted, while good, not absolutely amazing. Solid, but like others have said before me, nothing groundbreaking. What I believe is groundbreaking about this album are the ambient tracks. Lo-fi, dark, no really cheesy samples that can plague ambient tracks in metal albums, just a pure “this is the soundtrack to hell” feel. What really prevents this from getting any higher of a score is that there are only two ambient tracks on the album. Which to be fair, isn’t typically the focus of a metal album, so it’s hard to expect a black metal band to focus on something that’s not black metal. But maybe 50-50 ambient to metal? That’s something I can get behind. Or better yet, combine both in the same track (which they really only do kind of in the 7th track, which is the longest in the album). The somewhat short length is also somewhat of a disappointment, but I’ve always said that 45-50 minutes is just about the perfect length of an album typically, so 43 minutes isn’t far off from that (I’ve always thought that more ambient albums should be longer however, since that’s a lot easier to listen to).

So did this ultimately live up to the hype I generated for it? Not entirely. I was expecting something close to a 10, so naturally it’s pretty easy to be disappointed. However I am glad that this wasn’t literally just standard black metal that a lot of people were saying it was. That would’ve really been disappointing. Overall a great album if you’re looking for something that executes the fundamentals very well, but adds a little something different to separate it from the crowd.

Also now this review has exactly 666 words. Kvlt as fuck.