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Ernte – Geist und Hexerei

Geist und Hexerei
by Dave "That Metal Guy" Campbell at 11 February 2022, 3:20 PM

Being well aware of how to invade the darker side of your soul, the two members of ERNTE are by far no strangers to the scene. After almost 20 years of creating dark ambient music, photography, painting and graphic art, V. Noir decided that it was time to return to the roots: In 2020 his long-time passion for Black Metal found a form of expression in ERNTE, where he is the main songwriter, guitar player and responsible for recording and programming. In Witch N. (vocals, bass, violin) he found an appropriate and experienced co-musician. The album contains eight tracks.

“Prozession” leads off the album. Featuring solemn cello strings, this is quite a surprise. The cello as an instruments almost always sounds melancholy, and this song is no exception. Screams can be heard from across the mountainside. “Betyle (The Holy Stone)” features more of a traditional Black Metal sound…muted production, screaming vocals, galloping drums and a wall of guitars. It slows to clean guitars at the half-way mark, before returning again with the hideous sound. “When the Moon is Calling” begins with the same fast pace and wall of guitars. The vocals are again quite vile, and sustained. Again, it slows towards the end, with a brief passage of clean guitars.

“The Cold Mists of November” opens with more clean guitars and a slow grind. It picks up with hate and anger and retreats again. This waxing and waning continues throughout the song, with equal passages of harshness with ambient passages of clean and thoughtful sounds, though always dark. “Killing Phantasmagoria” begins with another slow, grinding sound of anger and perhaps despair. It picks up and then dies again, as the song title suggests. Eerie leads and some chunky bass work come in after the half-way mark, but those horrid screams continue. “Montane Mastery” opens with a steady riff and more controlled vocals. A short pause ensues, with dialed down melodies. “The Holy Stone Part II (Interlude)” is a very short instrumental with cold, solemn clean guitar tones.

“The Ending Void” closes the album, with a slow groove that will grind you to your demise. Overall, this was a fairly interesting Black Metal album with some additional elements outside of the traditions in the genre. Smartly, ERNTE challenged the narrow boundaries of the first-wave genre with about as much outside influence as you could have, without losing fans of the original movement. Unfortunately, they weren’t as expansive as I had hoped that they would be, and didn’t produce enough of that outside sound for me.

Songwriting: 5
Musicianship: 6
Memorability: 4
Production: 6

2 Star Rating

1. Prozession
2. Betyle (The Holy Stone)
3. When the Moon is Calling
4. The Cold Mists of November
5. Killing Phantasmagoria
6. Montane Mastery
7. The Holy Stone Part II (Interlude)
8. The Ending Void
V. Noir – Satanic 6 Strings, Bass, Apocalyptic Percussions and Programming
Witch N – Screams, Chants from the Depths of Hell, Bass, Eerie Bows
Record Label: Vendetta Records


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