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Winterfylleth - The Reckoning Dawn review

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Band: Winterfylleth
Album: The Reckoning Dawn
Release date: May 2020

01. Misdeeds Of Faith
02. A Hostile Fate: The Wayfarer, Pt. 4
03. Absolved In Fire
04. The Reckoning Dawn
05. A Greatness Undone
06. Betwixt Two Crowns
07. Yielding The March Law
08. In Darkness Begotten

Rest assured, it is in fact possible for musicians to explore creative outlets without abandoning their origins.

One of the UK's finer metal exports of the past decade, Winterfylleth have become an established atmospheric black metal outfit proving time and again why they belong in the top tier of the genre, only they deviated from that path rather boldly with their 2018 acoustic album, The Hallowing of Heirdom. While not entirely shocking for a band of this nature to show off their neofolk influences (re: Agalloch and The White EP), it wasn't received nearly as well and is largely considered to be a blemish on the band's discography. Whatever your personal opinion of that foray into differentiating how to channel their creativity is irrelevant now, however, as The Reckoning Dawn takes aim at executing what put this act on the map in the first place. So, if part of your regular listening experiences have involved Winterfylleth at any point throughout their existence, then you'll be free from uncovering any unpleasant surprises or drastic changes to the working formula they've held fast to since their inception.

"A Hostile Fate", the fourth piece and amended conclusion to "The Wayfarer" trilogy from The Mercian Sphere dating back 10 years prior, is an immediate reminder of this. It's a symbolic gesture that lends intention to this new material without coming across as forcefully apologetic; rather, the statement of return is about as blatant as it gets, right down to the album covers' similar thematic color choices. This is concentrated effort, and it pays off beautifully. Epic, evocative leads make up the bulk of the catch factor in an otherwise dissonant display of atmosphere building and mid-paced tremolo riffing backed by purposeful drum beats, but describing the sound on paper doesn't do the combination or effort any justice. Despite track lengths nearing the 10-minute mark, each song feels succinct and focused as a result of some excellent writing that allows for tempo shifts and melodic breaks that culminate in successive levels of engagement as you reach the end of the album.

The Reckoning Dawn readily takes its place alongside the Winterfylleth back catalog, which is to say it just as readily finds itself sitting comfortably alongside any highly regarded contemporary atmospheric black metal release as something worth spending time with, whether you're someone who goes out of their way to consume as much of this music as you can, or a partially interested passerby looking to explore more of what the genre has to offer. Its only notable flaws are really its replay value, being that it's fairly mood-dependent, and that it does fall into an over-saturated style of music and consequently struggles to stand out among its peers. Those issues notwithstanding, the pros vastly outweigh the cons, and you'd be missing out on some quality material if you were to ignore this release.

Rating breakdown
Performance: 8
Songwriting: 9
Originality: 4
Production: 9

Written on 03.08.2020 by I'm total pro; that's what I'm here for.


Comments: 5   Visited by: 103 users
04.08.2020 - 03:08
Crème fraiche

I was just giving The Mantle another spin thinking that I needed something new to listen to. Way back I remember you did a review for Weedpecker's first album and this one became a favorite. Definitely looking forward to this!
04.08.2020 - 03:24
Rating: 8
Troy Killjoy
Written by Crème fraiche on 04.08.2020 at 03:08

I was just giving The Mantle another spin thinking that I needed something new to listen to. Way back I remember you did a review for Weedpecker's first album and this one became a favorite. Definitely looking forward to this!

The Mantle is forever worth re-listening to, it just never gets old.

I still shuffle through some Weedpecker tracks on my stoner playlist too, that debut will stick around with me forever.
"Wise men talk because they have something to say; fools because they have to say something."
04.08.2020 - 08:49
Rating: 8
Definitely like that this came after that acoustic album, it's clear that they used some lessons learned from that on here
Do you think if the heart keeps on shrinking
One day there will be no heart at all?
04.08.2020 - 17:30
Bad English
Tage Westerlund
Their neo folk stuff was cool way, this is cool as well, good band. Its like halgadom what is forbidden in ms, does. One pbm, one neo folk, and they goes like that.
Life is to short for LOVE, there is many great things to do online !!!

Stormtroopers of Death - ''Speak English or Die''

I better die, because I never will learn speek english, so I choose dieing
11.10.2020 - 10:15
Rating: 8


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