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Aeon Winds - Stormveiled

Aeon Winds
Stormveiled
by Chris Hawkins at 08 July 2019, 8:29 PM

Black Metal has truly become an international affair.  The other album I reviewed this week was also a Black Metal record, though by an American band, YELLOW EYESAEON WINDS, the subject of this review, are from Slovakia, perhaps a place one would not associate with the genre.  After listening to this sophomore release by the band, it is clear that their aims to put their homeland on the map will certainly be achieved.

This is Black Metal with a pulse, alive with a penchant for dark, embroiling layers of melody.  From the very beginning of the album with “Of Times Forgotten…,” AEON WINDS stake their claim by evoking images of the past while covering them with a fresh new coat of paint.  It is music that begs one’s attention for one cannot simply stand by inactively while this album is playing.  With a gift for conjuring the primordial, tracks like “Beyond All Empty Places,” the third track, traverse the inner mind’s eye.

One’s imagination is simply a blank canvas for AEON WINDS.  As the album progressed further, it was impossible not to hear parts reminiscent of past Black Metal greats.  “Dawn of the Untamed Moon,” the fourth track, has a very symphonic-era EMPEROR feel.  The riffs are played staccato, sharply, with much emphasis and feeling.  Earlier moments reminded me of early MOONSPELL for a very brief time, while the epic, majestic influence of LIMBONIC ART can be heard throughout.

After the halfway point, AEON WINDS have managed to fully ensnare me in their hypnotic spell.  “Legacy of the Unconquered Sun,” the sixth track, brought to mind moments from ARCTURUS’s sophomore release. There are so very many great sparks from Black Metal’s past, second wave being the dominant well from which is drawn, that any longtime fan will be more than pleased with this recording.

There are many elements that are key to the album’s success.  First, the vocals must be mentioned.  There is diversity here which keeps things from being anything near boring.  Alongside the typical Black Metal harsh vocals, are cleans that while they could be louder, never stray into whiny material or that which is overly operatic.  The guitars unite to form a wall of Metal impenetrable and solid.  The third important key to the band’s formula is the use of keyboards.  While they are performed in a very traditional sense, they aptly add to the atmosphere creating an air of mystery and the supernatural.  The drummer, as evidenced on the title track, must be commended for leading the fold into battle with the beat of militancy and dire consequences.

AEON WINDS have created an album that they can certainly be proud of.  It effectively takes the listener back to a time when things were not set in stone and canvases were blank.  It is a testament to their creativity, though, that they do not sounds like a band from 2019 trying to recreate the past.  Rather, “Stormveiled” fits comfortably alongside many of the genre’s classics.

Songwriting:  8
Originality:  7
Memorability:  8
Production: 7



4 Star Rating

Tracklist:
1. Of Times Forgotten…
2. A Cosmic Sky Ablaze
3. Beyond All Empty Places
4. Dawn of the Untamed Moon
5. It Is Beneath Where the Mountains Sing
6. Legacy of the Unconquered Sun
7. Stormveiled
8. Dying Star Remembrance
9. To Embrace the Void
10. …And Woods Forlorn

Lineup:
Svarthen – Bass, Guitars, Keyboards, Vocals
Askold – Drums
Skald – Guitars
Gard – Bass

Record Label: Avantgarde Music
     


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