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Perdition Winds - Transcendent Emptiness Award winner

Perdition Winds
Transcendent Emptiness
by Lauren Fonto at 19 February 2018, 6:57 AM

Finland has built up a reputation for producing great black metal albums, whether it be Second Wave-style or more on the melodic style. PERDITION WINDS are a fine addition to the Finnish roster, and has offered up their second full-length in the form of “Transcendent Emptiness”. The band has a notable pedigree, with members from SARGEIST, DESOLATE SHRINE, COMPRESSED and LIE IN RUINS. The production is the right mix of murky and well-balanced. I recently listened to a Second Wave-style black metal album with a production that sounded rough to the point of unpleasantness (this point of unpleasantness is admittedly very subjective). All of the musical elements have enough space in the mix to contributing towards creating the almost tangible atmosphere that saturates the album.

Everything on this album sounds like it should be there. The running time is neither too short nor too long. An early highlight is “Malicious Seed”, with a sense of something evil coming created by the sinister tom fills and droning riffs. The vocal performance is emphatic, and the riffs add a gritty feel. The clean leads later on reminded me of one of the lead melodies in BATHORY’s “Call from the Grave”. (Having a track titled “Outro” was another small reminder of BATHORY, since Quorthon had one on most of his albums.) A big drum roll leads up to a blistering solo, and the slower break is a real headbanger moment. The mysterious-sounding, reverby intro riffs on “Saturnial Void” set the scene well. The drum fills add interest without drowning out other instruments. The ringing riffs are imbued with emotion, while the bass riffs are hypnotic. The subtle keyboard parts add an extra layer of atmosphere. “Venus Rising” cranks up the energy levels with a faster tempo and rougher feel compared to “Saturnial Void”. The vocals are caustic, and match perfectly with the gritty riffs. The tolling bell adds a sense of finality, while the drum roll builds up the tension, which is then heightened by the solo riffs and cymbal chokes. The slower riffs towards the end create a sinister feel, as does the bubbling solo.

The droning, doom metal-like riffs on “Asphyxiation” conjure a picture of prolonged suffering. The bubbling riffs and furious blast beats add variety to the track. The break with the zombie-like growls create a chilling atmosphere. The resonant toms conjure up images of echoing tombs. A sense of uneasiness is created by the high leads, subtle keyboards and soft chants.  “Impious Frontier” has infectious guitar riffs, and rich bass. The vocals are like a cold wind which seeps into one’s bones. I liked how subtle variations were made on the main riff throughout, which added coherence, and prevented the riff from outstaying its welcome. The leads after the drawn-out scream were moving, and this quality was enhanced by the bass part.

The band pays tribute to old-school black metal without becoming a cliché. Their music is exactly what I want when I want to listen to straight-up Second Wave black metal. The riffs were memorable and weren’t diluted by too-long run times; the drums were resonant and powerful without being overpowering, and the songwriting was excellent overall.

Songwriting: 9
Originality: 8
Memorability: 8
Production: 9

4 Star Rating

1. Of Smoke And Mirrors
2. Malicious Seed
3. Saints Of The Deathfields
4. Saturnial Void
5. Venus Rising
6. Asphyxiation
7. Impious Frontier
8. Outro
J.I. – Vocals
R.Ä. – Guitars
J.K.A. – Bass, Vocals
T.K. – Guitars
R.S. – Drums 
Record Label: Hellthrasher Productions


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