Monday, March 28, 2011

Blut Aus Nord- Memoria Vetusta II: Dialogue With the Stars

Artist: Blut Aus Nord
Album: Memoria Vetusta II: Dialogue With the Stars
Genre: Black Metal
Year: 2009

The best release from the band that I've heard, and I've heard them all (except for Memoria Vetusta I and Odinist). This is pretty far removed from the industrial infused sound that I've normally associated with Blut Aus Nord's style, and I have to say I enjoy this a lot more. There are guitar leads that are out of this world scattered all over the album, and they really are one of the shining characteristics MVII has going for it. But there's also the occasional and complementary acoustic sections that nicely break up the audible whirlwind of metal this guy performs, allowing the listener to catch their breath. The riffing too, which has that undeniable Blut Aus Nord tone, is varied, more melodic, and delightful. It's the equivalent of eating my favorite dessert, but with my ears. I don't really care if that makes zero sense.

Lastly, I have to mention the extremely appropriate use of synths. It's not always present, but when they are it's used to accentuate the already grandiose nature of the guitar melodies/riffs. There are times when it even becomes the focal moment in the song, if only briefly. Prominent examples of this can be found in "The Formless Sphere (Beyond Reason" and "Antithesis of the Flesh (...and Then Arises a New Essence)", especially in the latter, where I could listen to that choir-synth part on repeat for eternity.

All in all, Memoria Vetusta II: Dialogue with the Stars is one of the strongest black metal releases of the last decade, easily. Not only is it a strong album in terms of its textured song structures, its deep replay value, and its originality, but it's also a great place to start if you've yet to take the plunge into Blut Aus Nord's fascinating world.

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