Background: Could there be a more appropriate place of origin for an Atmospheric Black Metal band than Iceland? Okay… there’s always Norway… But I swear anytime I hear a band coming from the land of ice, volcanoes, geysers, hot springs, lava fields and black beaches it’s some A grade content. AUÐN is no exception. They’ve been weaving out monstrous music since the year of our lorde 2010 and have put out a total of 3 albums in that time. The latest from this 6-piece comes in the form of “Vökudraumsins Fangi” which has made contact with this world via Season of Mist today! Let’s submerge our ears in the black…
This Album Sounds Like: A storm rising up from the depths of a darkened soul. The soundtrack of an apocalypse roiling over untouched landscapes. The essence of a world embraced in bitter ice. Just before winter covers large tracts of land, this album has been released in full glory. Perfect timing, AUÐN.
Some Favorite Tracks: This is all really solid Atmospheric Black Metal material. If the sound of that brings you pleasure, just hit the play button and sit back. Off the top of my head, “Verður von að bráð”, “Ljóstýra”, “Drepsótt”, “Eldborg”, the title track and “Einn Um Alla Tíð” stuck out but ’tis all quality of the finest metallic variety.
Positives: The sheer scale of this thing! Massive soaring guitar riffs, roaring drums and a screech like the wind coalesce to wrap up and carry away and repeatedly chomp on your ears like the prey they are. Everything translates quite well from top to bottom as the band work as a singular force of wicked sound. There’s an organic feel to this record conjuring images of nature in a state of turmoil. The production backing this this helps bring everything to life while simultaneously letting it breathe on its own. This was accomplished with no less than Stephen Lockhart (Björk, Iceland Symphony Orchestra, Svartidauði) at Studio Emissary engineering / producing and Jens Bogren (Opeth, Dimmu Borgir, Sepultura) with the mix and master at Fascination Street Studios.
Negatives: If you don’t enjoy extreme metal of this variety, I suppose steer clear. I will say that it’s not the most original Atmos Black Metal I’ve heard, and it can meander at times but it’s great for what it is in my ears.
In The End… AUÐN did a great job with what I believe to be their best record to date. I’m feeling a frostbitten 8 out of 10 for their work on “Vökudraumsins Fangi”. This is quality stuff. Sneak a peek through the streaming links on this page and go get the album through your favored platform. If you enjoy this, also be sure to check 2014’s self-titled effort and 2017’s “Farvegir fyrndar” from the band.