Thursday, July 14, 2016

Coldworld : " Autumn"

It's been 8 years since this German project put out an album so it's kinda a big deal. The sound has changed. Everything is bigger. It's more of a Briskworld than a cold one as the sound is not as stark and chilly as the earlier releases. This is more of an atmospheric black metal album than it is a depressive black metal album. There is something hopeful in chords propelling the scowling vocals. The clean vocals that appear in the first song are also more refined. A female vocal is layered into things on "Void".  The layers of synth are still present and set the stage for "Woods of Emptiness" which has a very emotionally charge pulse to guitars, but it never fully commits to being dark. Instead the song is painted in a hazy dream like gray. When the clean vocals come in the songs takes a turn from black metal and more towards a Porcupine Tree like prog, though I suppose "Wildhoney" era Tiamat could also be a reference point. There is more double bass than blast beating when the song swells up into a heavier dynamic. The song does accelerate into more of a black metal blur, but it numbs me out.

The singing continues going into "Autumn Shades". If you are not a regular reader of this blog then you should know 'm a fan of actual, despite the fact I write for No Clean Singing , who actually doesn't have that big of problem with it themselves, I am not sure how the modern black metal fan will feel about the more Opeth like direction the vocals are taking even though the shoe gazing shimmer of guitar is pretty stellar. This is a much more melodic direction for this project. With the title "Climax of Sorrow" I felt assured that if any depressing shit was going down then it would be this song. The vocals are pretty agonized and it is a little darker, but if you are supposed to belong to a genre title depressive black metal than that means you need to be darker than an already bleak genre of music. Things do get more emotive and nastier on this song. I guess what I miss is the project's personality that seems to have waned in the compromise between the lo-fi charm of the earlier album versus progressing into a bigger sound. This makes "Nightfall" sound more like every other atmospheric black metal band. So the give and the take on this album is sonically things have improved and perhaps this is what had to happen.

The album ends with another blur of atmospheric black metal that feels like it more of shimmering white light than the despondent last flicker of hope this project once sounded like. Just taking this album for what it is rather than weighing so heavily on a by gone era that might have me complaining about stagnation if this had sounded like everything else this project has done. I'll give this album an 8.5, it might not be what I wanted it to be, but it can't be denied as a majestic step forward into a more epic sound.

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