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Urfaust - Untergang review

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Band: Urfaust
Album: Untergang
Release date: August 2023

01. Untergang
02. Höllenkosmos
03. Leere
04. Reliquienstaub
05. Vernichtung
06. Atomtod
07. Abgrund

Let’s crack open the bottle of gin, already. For my heart is heavy, and so is Urfaust’s last album.

I discovered Urfaust by the late 2000s thanks to an enticing review of their debut album, written by one of our older Metalstorm staffers. It took me some time to get used to the hypnotic, slow tracks, the heavy emphasis on ambient music, and, of course, the one-of-a-kind operatic vocals. But it was more or less love at first sight. There might have been little variation between some of the albums, but that is unimportant to me, considering just how special Urfaust’s music really is. No black metal band has come close to their very particular rituals. Many a night, I have been drinking in solitude while the albums play loud and proud in the middle of the night. The slow pace of the drums, the droning riffs, the dreamy synths and keyboards. All orchestrated by the imposing, desperate howls and wails that could only be produced through heavily intoxicating devil worship.

The structure of Untergang plays on Urfaust’s strengths. Everything you came to know and love from the band’s discography has been condensed into that last shot you take before stumbling your way home after a wild night out. Untergang opens with incredibly harsh and potent riffs, along with VRDRBR’s galloping drumming. It truly gives the sensation that the cosmos is being torn apart. Your only companion are the desperate cries of IX, who performs as if he aims to scream his way out of this world forever.

But, just as soon as the violence ends, you will be greeted by drone doom passages filled with introspective dread. The back and forth between the faster, heavy-hitting songs and the slow-paced dirges evokes the images of crushing waves that slowly but surely erode your mind. Thanks to the cleverly built fade-outs and droning ambience, the songs flow into one another as if the album was just one smooth track. Even though some of the track progressions can be as predictable as the snoring of a clochard, they are still charming and, most importantly, effective.

Urfaust still managed to sneak in one little surprise in the track “Vernichtung”, which carries a catchy beat with an infectious psychedelic vibe that nearly reminded me of Nachtmystium’s oddball track “No Funeral” — albeit far more decadent, slower, and lo-fi. A shame that it was just an instrumental, though. The second half of Untergang focuses mostly on ritualistic doom/ambient, but it manages to stick the landing with the last track “Abgrund”. It is a triumphant yet solemn goodbye with thundering and bass-heavy riffs, pounding drums, and cathartic wails. A pitch-black procession leading to eternal rest.

For now I understand that the bell from this mystical funeral march, which Urfaust has composed for 20 years, does not toll for them alone. It tolls for me and you. Urfaust will forever be remembered for perfectly portraying the decaying of the self through pure, drunken ecstasy.


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

Written on 14.09.2023 by A lazy reviewer but he is so cute you'd forgive him for it.


Comments: 6   Visited by: 107 users
14.09.2023 - 20:22
Rating: 8
Do you think if the heart keeps on shrinking
One day there will be no heart at all?
14.09.2023 - 20:47
Rating: 8
X-Ray Rod
Written by BloodTears on 19.08.2011 at 18:29
Like you could kiss my ass
Written by Milena on 20.06.2012 at 10:49
Rod, let me love you.
14.09.2023 - 20:53
A Real Mönkey

Written by X-Ray Rod on 14.09.2023 at 20:47

Damn, I would kill to make a gin & juice with that.
"Change the world. My final message. Goodbye."

~Last words of Harambe, seconds before he was shot, according to child he shielded from gunfire
16.09.2023 - 08:36
Rating: 8

Written by A Real Mönkey on 14.09.2023 at 20:53

Written by X-Ray Rod on 14.09.2023 at 20:47

Damn, I would kill to make a gin & juice with that.

The 6th batch of this gin with almost identical bottle (just different colors) is available for sale on Van Records eshop.
Official link:

I hope this is not considered spam, I was just trying to help.
17.09.2023 - 18:17
Drone Strike
Haven’t gotten to this just yet but great review man, makes me all the more interested to hear it now.

I’m not upset or raging in the slightest over the news of the breakup. The way I see it, at least I managed to experience them in their prime, being around as they dropped some of the standout releases in their discography, and got the privilege of catching them live…. with an exclusive Roadburn 2015 tour shirt picked up after the fact, no less.

RIP and cheers to a great run, ya spooks!
Check out Apothecary's Favorite Bands Playlist, brotendo. One track per band.
19.09.2023 - 11:44

Great review, great band, great album to say goodbye.

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