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Der Weg einer Freiheit - Finisterre Award winner

Der Weg einer Freiheit
by Riccardo Gaffuri at 03 September 2017, 11:46 AM

After shaking off their “underground” condition with “Stellar”, which meant for them stable appearances on main European festival stages (Summer Breeze, Hellfest), German DER WEG EINER FREIHEIT are coming back with their latest full release “Finisterre”, published by Season of Mist.

Lineup saw some changes, with vocalist/guitarist Nikita Kamprad and drummer Tobias Schuler as the anchor point for this release: in spite of these changes (new members actually didn’t contribute to the recording of “Finisterre”), their sound didn’t clearly shift away from their beaten path, although we get a sense of widening their views into broader horizons. Frantic rhythms still are at the core of their music, but their rawest black metal edges look polished, with more than a few incursions into Cascadian metal territories and shoegazing: this album might represent their ongoing journey to US Pacific Northwest from their past Scandinavian experience. Melancholic melodies, tempo changes and detailed layering throughout this LP draw evocative landscapes, drawn by DWEF through 5 lengthy tracks that clock in the end at 45 mins, although never leaving place to boredom nor a sense of stressing out their content, in a seamless

A fast paced deluge opens the record with “Aufbruch”: after a spoken intro, the band builds upon a bleak melody their vision of black metal, twisting clean and heavy sections together, brewing their suffering with the usage of clean vocals stitched to the harsh and unstoppable Nikita vocals, sustained by crying guitars. This is just an example of which form this album will later take: a drowning ocean swallows the listener, wave after wave, sometimes one centimeter at a time, sometimes entire kilometers in a bunch of seconds; all these waves push us deeper, filling our lungs with melancholy and a gloomy mood. “Ein letzer Tanz”, literally “a last dance”, starts off with a no hope single guitar melody, something à la AGALLOCH setting us in the sad mood it revolves around its 13 mins composition, structured like a creature stuck in a trap: going back and forth between apathy and passion, it tries to free itself with spurs of a post black metal with affinity to the French scene (REGARDE LES HOMMES TOMBER / DELUGE), dark and compressed.

Following “Skepsis pt1 & pt2” is in my opinion the best example to understand the levels achieved by DWEF in songwriting: first instrumental part starts off with a doom approach, tremolo-picked guitars and unrelenting percussion which grow into a post-rocker intense wet dream near the end, something that MONO or PG.LOST may have given birth to. From this Part 2 takes off, adding harsh vocals and u-turns in tempos, before fading out on a hopeless and epic finale. Titletrack “Finisterre” sets us back to their last release, with a more blackened and “ordinary” approach: this song left some bitter under my tongue as it sounded a bit detached from the rest, grown as a whole so far. Having said that, this is once again a more than fine track, with its magnificent second half, contained in the furious explosions in tempo and vocals, kept at bay by strings, on which the album fades away.

This record left me stuck in it on loop for about a week: DWEF got me in 2015 with their “Stellar” but this is a huge step forward in the way they are able to create, polish and enrich their creations, layer after layer; beyond their technical skills, it’s their ability to control and give their power new forms in a matter of minutes that comes out most from this “Finisterre”, a work that will require more than a listening session to be fully understood. Future looks bright for them, as they own what it takes to differentiate and be unique in the overcrowded post black scene.

Songwriting: 10
Originality: 10
Memorability: 10
Production:  10

5 Star Rating

1. Aufbruch
2. Ein letzter Tanz
3. Skepsis Part I
4. Skepsis Part II
5. Finisterre
Nikita Kamprad - Vocals, Guitars
Tobias Schuler - Drums
Nico Rausch - Guitars
Nico Ziska - Bass
Record Label: Season of Mist


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Edited 16 July 2018

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