LĘK - Sweven (Through The Mysterious Lands) (WOLFSPELL Records - CD 2015)
This is a second Wolfspell release I am listening to – and it’s also the only Polish band I think in the roster of this label. They’re called Lęk, which means fear in Polish. Well, I’ve heard some negative opinions on this band, so they surely didn’t give me optimistic feelings before playing “Sweven (Through The Mysterious Lands)”. As it turns, it ain’t as bad and worthless as I was afraid. It’s actually quite decent, quite melodic, but also harsh and aggressive black metal, hugely influenced by the classic Scandinavian black metal, both Swedish and Norwegian.
But if I can be honest, albums like “Sweven (Through The Mysterious Lands)” always give me a headache. It isn’t bad, I’ve listened to it several times and surely I like it more than a lot of the crap that’s around these days. But I just can’t help, but look at bands like Lęk with a dose of scepticism, not only for their weak ideological side or this hilarious “I am evil” imagery. Which of course is a part of black metal, but sometimes I can’t help, but laugh. But mainly it’s also the fact that such bands like Lęk will always stay in the ass of the underground, they won’t come up with an album that’s gonna be remembered in years to come, with something truly special and so they’ll drown in the sea of mediocrity. Who cares... let them do what they want. As for “Sweven (Through The Mysterious Lands)”, I basically wrote what I think about the album – it’s quite decent record, but nothing truly special at the same time.
But to be fair, the band already has some good skills and the songs are quite good. I like how Lęk combines the melody with harshness and aggression, and how they switch from fast to slower tempos, quite a bit in the vein of some Gorgoroth albums. Finally, the production is not bad at all. And to mention some songs, which I especially liked, then I need to say “The Solitary Elect of Darkness”, “My Death” or “In the Wintry Coldest Night”. The problem with the whole album is that sometimes I feel like the ideas were enough to make just few tracks and later they started to repeat themselves and you start to feel like you’ve been listening to the same riffs, arrangements, etc for the whole time. But that’s a sin of the beginners, I suppose, so I’m not gonna judge them harsh for that.
Not bad debut album then, but I would require much, much more from Lęk to really impress me.
Standout tracks: “The Solitary Elect of Darkness”, “My Death”, “In the Wintry Coldest Night”
Final rate: 65/100