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Ulvdalir - Hunger for the Cursed Knowledge

Hunger for the Cursed Knowledge
by Justin "Witty City' Wittenmeier at 14 April 2020, 4:43 AM

ULVDALIR is a Russian Black Metal band formed way back in 2001.  They have been quite prolific, having released three full lengths, three EPs, three splits, and a compilation album.  "Hunger For The Cursed Knowledge," is a four track album that might be considered an EP but it also has thirty three minutes of music within those tracks so there is a decent amount of content to enjoy.  If you like underground Black Metal (who doesn't, honestly) you will definitely need to add this to your blasphemous collection because it is extremely powerful.

After a minute or so of ambient sounds and chanting, the first track, "Anger Bringer," vomits forth a badass riff, screeching blackened howls, and drums that might as well be played by a marching army such is the attack.  This is a fairly intense track but the riffs, which contain hits of melody and tremendous groove to go along with the classic Black Metal tremolo riffs, keep things wholly interesting.  That groove at 2:35 is enough to make even the most ardent Black Metal hater bang their head likes it's 1990—and if you already love this genre, I see no reason why this track won't impress.  A bit scary, searing, and completely unforgiving—just the way Black Metal should be.

"Road of Knowledge," starts much the same as the opener but the ambient doesn't go on as long–this track was made for going to the throat for an instant kill.  The riffs are less centered on groove and more laser focused on classic Black Metal fury but it doesn't come off as dated—the production helps with this as it is appropriately raw but not so raw that it seems it was recorded in your bathroom while you were taking a dumper. The vocals drift in and out of these pummeling riffs with ease to create a track that flows exceptionally well.  The halfway point of the song finds the band backing off ever so slightly to let the riffs shine once more and for the drums to find a nice place to just focus on laying down some excellent work, pinpoint precision with laser focused will.

The third track, "The Sun of the Pale Night (Void Amongst the Fire)” is one hell of a title for a song but its also one hell of a song.  This is probably the most traditional sounding track on the album–despite the fact it seems to go on a minute or so longer than needed, there is no doubt it supplies the listener with more than enough ample Black Metal.  As far as full speed ahead, non-stop Black Metal goes, this track is definitely a showcase for how to pull it off.

It fades out nicely into the final track, "Out of The Darkness of the Depths," which is maybe my favorite of the four tracks.  The harrowing screams/vocals work in tandem with the chaotic riffs and drums for an almost hypnotic feel brought on by a whirlwind of things that you don't want to bump into the night.  The guitars drop some really heavy tones throughout added some much-needed weight to the overall atmosphere, which is damn near suffocating but certainly twisted. The song ramps up the anger around the seven-minute more and just lays it all out in a bare form of demonic musical trance.

I tend to prefer Black Metal bands that step outside the box but there is no denying the more traditional straight forward power of ULVDALIR's "Hunger For The Cursed Knowledge."

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

4 Star Rating

1. Anger Bringer
2. Road of Knowledge
3. The Sun of The Pale Night (Void Amongst The Fire)
4. Out Of The Darkness Of The Depths
I.K. Winterheart – Guitars, Vocals
Kreator - Guitars
Record Label: Inferna Profundis


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