Rating:
7.5
Raventale - After
15 December 2010


01. Gone
02. After
03. Youth
04. Flames
05. The Northern Hemisphere [Carpathian Forest cover]


I'm sure the first thing that popped to your mind when seeing the teaser for this review, along with the golden butterfly album cover, was "black/doom!" I know it was the first thing that popped into my mind. Ok, maybe not.

In any case, Raventale is one of those 'one man band' black metal projects, headed up by Astaroth, who hails from Ukraine. After is his fourth album and features five tracks spanning 35 minute or so.

The music is basically slow tempo black metal that shows influences from both the Doom side of things as well as some other Ukrainian black metal band you might be familiar with... Dude? Droog? Drudkh, Where's My Car? You get the idea.

Continuing along, I've also seen the term "depressive" bandied about as a descriptor for their style of black metal. I found it anything but. It actually has a warm feel to it. The guitars are well executed with a warm tone that drives the songs along. Keyboards wash in on the periphery, helping songs glide along without drowning anything out. Drums go along drumming, and I believe I heard a bass at a couple points in the album.

Vocals are of the spat/rasped type, and well done, when used. The lyrical topics broached are eternity and decay, as well as the cyclical nature of life, which then draws the art in, you know, as a worm is a lowly worm (well caterpillar, whatever), then evolves into the beautiful butterfly... only to eventually die and become, well, wormfood. Or at least that's my simplistic translation.

All in all, it's not particularly trailblazing and original, it's basically Drudkh flavored black metal smothered in doom sauce, but it is certainly executed well. Raventale succeed in capturing a mood. Perhaps not the horribly bleak one some might expect from an album in which "doom" and "depressive" have been used as descriptors. No. It's a warm but melancholic feel. It's the album to a Sunday afternoon in the Spring. You feel swell, life is good, but at that same time you have that tugging, foreboding notion in the back of your mind... "tomorrow it's back to work/class/slaying dragons before the weekly staff meeting at MS Towers" and your enjoyment of the moment is diminished with the knowledge of the inevitable demise of your free time.

Or something.

In any case, it's an enjoyable album definitely worth checking out. Particularly for Drudkh fans who might be looking for new stuff similar to their older works.

Performance: 8
Songwriting: 8
Originality: 6
Production: 8


Band profile: Raventale
Album: After


 



Written on 03.03.2011 by
BitterCOld
BitterCOld has been officially reviewing albums for MetalStorm since 2009.
More reviews by BitterCOld ››



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wormdrink414 - 04.03.2011 at 01:32  
Quote:
Drudkh, Where's My Car?


Troy Killjoy - 04.03.2011 at 07:04  
Wasn't overly convinced until the final sentence. Will definitely listen to sooner rather than later.
Merchant of Doom - 04.03.2011 at 18:32  
Good album, which I enjoyed a lot, especially compared to his previous efforts... shame it' so short (or someone might be grateful for that... ).
BitterCOld - 04.03.2011 at 18:43  
Written by Merchant of Doom on 04.03.2011 at 18:32

Good album, which I enjoyed a lot, especially compared to his previous efforts... shame it' so short (or someone might be grateful for that... ).


it is a bit short, but from my perspective that wasn't a terribly bad thing. at least given the fact i try to listen to most albums at least a dozen times before reviewing. made it real easy to just hit "play" again.

but you hit it on the head, it's a good, enjoyable album. though i had not heard any of his prior works for comparison or observations on progress...
Merchant of Doom - 05.03.2011 at 00:40  
Written by BitterCOld on 04.03.2011 at 18:43

Written by Merchant of Doom on 04.03.2011 at 18:32

Good album, which I enjoyed a lot, especially compared to his previous efforts... shame it' so short (or someone might be grateful for that... ).


it is a bit short, but from my perspective that wasn't a terribly bad thing. at least given the fact i try to listen to most albums at least a dozen times before reviewing. made it real easy to just hit "play" again.

but you hit it on the head, it's a good, enjoyable album. though i had not heard any of his prior works for comparison or observations on progress...


well, this is the most melodic/more accomplish work from him... meaning it's actually well crafted and all compositions are spot on. Maybe we can call it the most mature work of his. And maybe maturity comes with a price: not that sustainable... I was looking for another 10 min. epic at the end, but, alas, it wasn't to be. Disappointed? Hell, yes. Because I was surprised and I wanted more...
Troy Killjoy - 11.03.2011 at 04:10  
So I got around to hearing this for the first time today, and I must say its only significant flaw is that it's a tad inconsistent. I love the melodies, and the song's conclusions are very strong, but there's definitely some filler within each track.

The guitars do an excellent job at creating an atmosphere that "weighs" on you and makes it feel like you're being dragged down, and the drumming works well in its simplicity. The vocals are great, which is to be expected, but the overall melody of the album was a big surprise for me. I'd say an 8.0 or so is a fair rating; it isn't the best album in its genre, but the similarity to October Falls' latest is reason enough for me to think of this as a really good album.

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