Full Length, Antithetic Records
January 23rd, 2012
Genre: Atmospheric Black Metal
Region: South Africa
Can't say that much "cascadian" themed black metal has flowed out of South Africa but Wildernessking have adapted that style with a few differences from their North American counterparts. The occasional long brooding riffs are there, winding from furious speeds to slower, warm melodic passages that linger and a great venomous vocal style from the bassist splitting through the atmosphere. However this record is much more complex. The album soars triumphantly with more progressive instrumentals, not necessarily resting on mournful or cold aesthetics but looking towards cosmic themes and breaking through the trappings of the genre.
In other moments their spin on the more traditional elements championed by the genre is refreshing — one thing that helps here is that unlike a lot of their peers they manage to keep every track under 10 minutes long, showing off the ability to edit themselves while managing to have the album feeling huge, atmospheric. While I do love me some 20 minute epics without a doubt (and often prefer them) it's nice to see that, like Obolus for instance, Wildernessking manage to break from this and still provide just as much passionate writing.
Every instrument is clear too. Not only do the guitars have a wonderful biting tone, the bass pushes past everything rather than
being relegated under everything else and the drumming (which is a more notable aspect here) is dynamic, tight,
powerful; capable of blasting as well as more subtle, gentle touches. The feeling that something grand is being constructed before
you in each song is immediately felt.
This is some great black metal I think you guys should check out. It's hard to believe this is their first record. If you want a cd copy you can get one from the Antithetic Records store, or you can listen to the record on bandcamp; and if you want to contribute to the upcoming vinyl press then go to the fundraising page and pay what you want. I would suggest doing so.