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Ulfven - Bland Aska Och Sten

Bland Aska Och Sten
by "Metal Mark" Garcia at 30 April 2020, 8:16 AM

Sweden helped the second incarnation of Death Metal to spread its talons throughout the world due the works of names as CARNAGE, ENTOMBED, DISMEMBER, UNLEASHED and some other bands in the beginning of the 90’s. On other hand, AT THE GATES, IN FLAMES and DARK TRANQUILITY created Melodic Death Metal. So it seems that Swedish Death Metal scene ceased to create relevant new names, but ULFVEN comes to show that things aren’t in this way with “Bland Aska Och Sten”, their latest release.

What the listener will find on the album is a blend between Swedish traditional Death Metal with Gothenburg Melodic Death Metal and some influences from Doom Death Metal. It’s the best way to label their musical work that keeps the brutality and oppression from the classical approach, but the melodic outfit is clear to the ears as well, and some slow paced tempos are pointing for a crude dose of what Doom Death Metal was in the beginning of the 90’s (although some clean and introspective moments inherited from the genre can be found as well, as can be heard on “Korpen”). It’s truly good, and a different experience in some ways.

Rickard Törnqvist took over of the mixing and mastering of “Bland Aska Och Sten”, to help the band to create a sound quality that could fit on what they play. The final result is something that bears that crude feeling of Old School Death Metal, but being clean and defined as well. Everything sounds good and with instrumental tunes that were chosen in a good way. It’s not perfect, but fits for now.

This EP has four very good songs, being “I Mörkret Hon Skall Födas” (never ask me what the last name means in Portuguese) and “I Mörkret Hon Skall Dö” two incidental and short instrumental songs. But “Korpen” (a harsh and crude ambience tempered with very good melodies created by the guitars), “Skuggdansen” (the slow paced tempos created by bass guitar and drums shows some technical moments that are great), “Häxkonst” (the tempos slow a bit more than on the other songs, what means that the ambiance becomes darkened and nasty, thanks to the guitars) and “Skärselden” (as climatic and bitter as the last one, but with an evident melodic scent and very good nasty vocals) are proofs of a band that must be enjoyed by extreme Metal fans.
For now, “Bland Aska Och Sten” seems like a kind of ‘warming up’ release for a future new album of ULFVEN. Let’s see what future will bring.

Musicianship: 8
Songwriting: 8
Memorability: 7
Production: 8

4 Star Rating

1. I Mörkret Hon Skall Födas
2. Korpen
3. Skuggdansen
4. Häxkonst
5. I Mörkret Hon Skall Dö
6. Skärselden
Jonathan Hultqvist - Vocals, Bass
Robert Österberg - Guitars, Vocals
Marcus Wiklund - Guitars
Ville Isakson Johnson - Drums
Record Label: Independent


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