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Hraun – Black Molten Essence Award winner

Black Molten Essence
by Liam Easley at 30 March 2020, 11:24 PM

Germany has had a booming Black Metal scene for a while now, and 2020 has shown that this scene will not die anytime soon. HRAUN’s debut full-length, “Black Molten Essence,” will release on Apr. 24, and here’s why you need to mark that date on your calendar.

The album’s only single so far, “Occult Blood,” started the album off with everything that this album encompassed: Doom Metal, Black Metal, Death Metal and a hint of Progressive Rock. Basically, this album was a darker version of ENSLAVED with less Progressive moments. The starting track was slow and filled with doom with a nice balance of clean, growled and blackened vocals. With a mix of heavy and airy riffing within six minutes, it was impressive to say the least.

The album went back and forth between fast, blackened fury and slow, doomy atmosphere until the end. “In the Pouring Rain I Lie” was where the album peaked, as the track featured stunning vocal melodies and dense, layered instrumentals. The vocal melody was dark yet uplifting, and the chemistry between the clean vocals and the blackened riffing was perfect.

Seducing Voices” followed the mid-paced “In the Pouring Rain I Lie” with high-velocity, blackened riffing. This track had multiple components, each one working in its own fashion to reach the same outcome, and they were all successful. This was the other highlight from the record due to its impeccable flow and savage riffing.

Each track went through the motions in the most congruent fashion, and each riff flowed into the next with ease. When the song went from soft to blasting, it could have happened in the blink of an eye and still have been transitioned with precision. Even when blasting, the music carried the melody gently overhead the tumult. This album was truly an exhibit in songwriting that did not stutter. Instead, it created its own musical horizon, steady yet infinitely chaotic.

This record was topped off with a very nice production. While a lot of blackened music has a raw production, the polished job that this album was given made every layer audible, and that was more than necessary. Some of the tracks had layers that changed the direction of the entire track, and without the production, these new dimensions would have been lost.

Hraun created a record of pure savagery and at the same time serenity. Its riffs were stellar, and while not being 100 percent “Progressive,” the music as a whole was forward-thinking, and that is what Progressive music is. This was forward-thinking Doom/Death/Black Metal, and it may one day be considered a classic.

Songwriting: 10
Musicianship: 9
Memorability: 9
Production: 10

5 Star Rating

1. Occult Blood
2. Rituals
3. In the Pouring Rain I Lie
4. Seducing Voices
5. Hamarinn
6. Take Back the Light
7. Through the River Black
S.B. – Vocals
M.S. – All Instruments & Backing Vocals
Record Label: F.D.A. Records


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