Thursday, 12 October 2017

Hermóðr - Hädanfärd

HERMODR - Hädanfärd (WOLFSPELL Records CD 2017)
I hate to say it, but it's just impossible to keep track with Hermóðr. This project is more active than anything else and Rafn composes and records more songs, than you even wish to hear. I am not even sure if that's good or not. Anyway, last thing, which I have heard from Hermóðr was "A Place of Eternal Twilight / Carved in Ice" in 2016, but Rafn didn't waste his time and recorded another pile of EPs and albums since then. He's crazy! I had no chance to hear few of these last releases, but recently I bought two... And I am happy I did so, because such "Hädanfärd" is one of his best works so far. 
Yes, it's good to notice that even though Hermóðr comes up with so many releases every year, Rafn is still able to keep great quality in his music and come up with some excellent ideas for it. "Hädanfärd" is a great proof for it. Unlike all these EPs, which he records (where are one or two very long songs), full length albums usually have more, but shorter songs. What definitely helps and makes listening a bit easier, you know? The album is also less monotonous, even if the music is constantly doomy, melancholic and nostalgic, when speaking of the atmosphere, which it awakes. I have to say that I love that combination of black metal harshness and repetitive, almost a bit Burzum-esque playing with melody and truly sorrowful aura. I even dare to say that Hermóðr music often sounds almost beautiful, even though such word would usually not fit black metal. But damn, just give a listen to these fantastic harmonies, long instrumental passages, which hypnotize with its sound... It may seem a bit too monotonous and too repetitive at the first listen, some will just say that it's boring, but give "Hädanfärd" a closer, more careful listen and you'll discover that this music is almost magic. So, these are some fantastic 50 minutes of atmospheric black metal. I like also the fact that Rafn can come up with some great riffs and harsh vocals, he doesn't focus just on keyboard parts. I was also surprised to hear some nice female vocals of Helga in one of the best songs "Under frusen älv". This is something new to Hermóðr, but it gave the music a bit new dimension. 
Definitely then "Hädanfärd" is a great offer for fans of atmospheric, melancholic black metal. I recommend it, but not only this album, but all stuff, which Hermóðr released so far. It's a lot of shit, so probably you won't be able to pick it up all at once, unless you're a millionaire, but few CDs should do well to start with. Great project, beautiful music, which I could listen to for hours, especially now in these colder Autumn days (well, even song titled "Höst" means "Autumn" from Swedish haha). 
Standout tracks: "Nord", "Höst", "Under frusen älv" 
Final rate: 80/100 

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