Frosthelm – The Endless Winter (Black Work (Alkemy Brothers), 22 March 2015)
Hello out there, how are you all doing on this fine afternoon?
I know there hasn’t been so much activity around here lately, and I really wish it could be otherwise, but as seems to happen pretty frequently, other facets of life get pretty crazy sometimes.
But I did want to drop by and remind you folks about the Ghost Bath and Numenorean tour that’s currently spreading across the country like some vile plague. I’ve seen lots of excitement about this one — specifically about the show in Pittsburgh that’s coming up this Friday the 16th (which, if you hurry, there is still a little bit of time left to WIN a pair of tickets for!).
And also, I thought this might be an opportune moment to say a few words about the third band featured on that tour’s line-up: Frosthelm, who hail from the frozen northern tundra that is Bismarck, ND. These guys put out an album last year that’s every bit as bitter and frosty as that incredible artwork at the top of this page; I’ve got a feeling you’ll want to check this out …
The nine tracks that make up The Endless Winter start off with a stark, but pretty, acoustic guitar plus piano intro, like a cold but gentle breeze just starting to pick up across an unforgiving and barren landscape. But by the conclusion of the two-minute opening track “Glacial Eon,” this has abruptly swelled into a thunderous avalanche of blackened-death sounds; likewise, the first full song of the album “Storm of Teeth” opens with some killer speed-thrash riffs that then build into an icy and vicious style of BDM.
“Forlorn Tides” and “Tomb of Sordid Ruin” continue in a similar manner, but just like the hellish fury of a midwinter blizzard, by the middle of the album — “Beneath Dead Horizons” as well as the title track — the band has reached a fast and brutal pitch, pummeling like a heavy hailstorm. As this subsides somewhat in tempo (but not in intensity!), “Hell Between Us” presents some slower spots, with heavy-blackened-doomy riffs, a mood that carries on into the introduction of “The Dragon.” While this penultimate track does head back into a barrage of fast, thrashy BDM, the closing piece “Silent and Dark, the Everlasting” ends with an acoustic duet very similar to the one found at the beginning of the album. Thus having come full-circle, the storm has dissipated as quickly as it began, leaving a desolate waste in its wake.
If you get a chance to catch Frosthelm while they’re on tour, naturally you’ll want to support them by buying merch directly from the band. But you can also grab a copy of The Endless Winter right here.
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