Saturday, November 13, 2021

November is Doom- Kuan : "Ice Fleet"

Here is a band from Estonia , which means they are going to have both Finnish and Russian influence to their sound. This might factor into the dark woodsy sound that might even bring Agalloch to mind at time.  To call this band atmospheric doom is a bit of an exaggeration at this point in time. They have a very expansive sound. They are mournful and sonically intense so , it might be fitting to say they at least color their songs with a similar shade of melancholy as doom does. It is not until the  hear something that has a metal attack. It opens with a piano piece that moves with the languid flow of melancholy, When the harsher vocals come in they have more of a black metal snarl to them than the lower more death metal sound we more commonly think of doom having. They weave a wide range of dynamic highs and lows into this song. 

The dark lurking in the woods with atmospheric wailing while lingering on a woeful throb is a feeling captured with " Kutsu" . Male singing comes in midway and adds to me seeing this lean in more of a doom direction, if w are talking about bands like Paradise Lost or Moonspell.  "Raivo" holds off until unleashing it's more explosive metal elements , but does so in a way that is not following a rigid blue print of what metal needs to be in terms of guitar tone, as the chords are allowed to clang and ring. The stage they are creating is not traditional songwriting in the lets give you and ear worm, but painting a cinematic backdrop while still giving you enough to remind you they are metal in some way. To contrast this on "Ole" they drop back into more of a folk ballad. They build it up with the kind of buzz normally found at the intersection of black metal and post-rock. 

They low into the last song riding the wave of synths from the previous song. They do not make you wait as long for the more powerful electric guitar sounds to crash into you. They ride this is a Gathering like soaring wave rather than what we think of as metal.  When they do pound the point home here they do it in a very almost Swans like way. This is post- doom I suppose if we have to lump it into any where, the metal moments that do crop up might split the difference between doom and black metal. Whatever this is it is excellent and I am surprised I did not hear more about this back in March when it came out.,  This album is certainly another feather in the cap of Artofact Records  

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