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Warmoon Lord – Battlespells Award winner

Warmoon Lord
Battlespells
by Andrew Graham at 17 September 2021, 12:48 AM

One-man Black Metal project (if I had a quid for every one of those!) WARMOON LORD unleashes full-length album number two onto the world, offering a strong and worthwhile platter of melodic Black Metal to a very crowded scene. Of Finnish origin, self-titled Lord Vrăjitor successfully weaves good old fashioned Black Metal with symphonic flourishes, atmospheric synth sweeps and melodic guitar-playing together into a deeply satisfying and memorable romp through the dark, brooding forests of Finland.

“Virtus Tenebris” opens the proceedings, with slow but deliberate melodies conveyed through guitar and keyboards, leading seamlessly into “Purging Nefarious Vortex”. This track gives the listener a tasty sampler of everything to expect on the album: relentless blackened blast beats, shifting time-signatures, and ethereal synth backdrops reminiscent of early EMPEROR. A strong start indeed! The melodic aspect is on full display in “Of A Moribund Vision”. We open with the kind of haunting tunefulness one would expect of very early IN FLAMES (I hope I am forgiven for comparing a Finnish black metal band to a Swedish melodic death metal band – I can hear the puritans sharpening their pitchforks and lighting their torches…) Not only is this an album highlight (pretty good considering we’re not yet halfway in!) but a fantastic Black Metal song all around.

“The Key Of The Moonpiercer” somehow manages to set the bar even higher. Acoustic guitars, beautiful melodies and Rob Darken’s handy keyboard work climb higher and higher to glorious climax, setting yet another high mark for the album. “Empowered With Battlespells” opens with little flourishes of, what almost seems like, power metal. It’s nice to see Black Metal acknowledging its debt to (or even the mere existence of) other metal sub-genres! Playful parts on keyboard maintain this power metal vibe throughout, much to the credit of this track.

“Oracles Of War” showcases some of the more impressive and delightful guitar work, with deeply satisfying melodies on display. I’m inclined to rank this stuff up along with DISSECTION as an excellent example of its type, and a bloody good romp to boot! “In Perennial Twilight” is a fitting close to such a masterpiece as this. The stops are pulled out and the dials cranked up to eleven! There is great complexity and sophistication contained herein, in many ways an album crescendo that pummels the listener at once both with blackened brutality but also with ethereal synths, chorus, and those oh-so-satisfying guitar melodies.

This is an outstanding achievement. One can only hope that WARMOON LORD gets the attention it deserves, for it seems likely to be the standard-bearer for modern melodic Black Metal. There’s obvious nostalgia on display – there often is with Black Metal – but this is not backward-looking or regressive. This is fresh and exciting, and well-deserving of your attention, dear reader, so stop what you’re doing, don your corpse-paint and extremely heavy chain-mail, and get this listened to!

Songwriting: 9
Musicianship: 9
Memorability: 8
Production: 8

4 Star Rating

Tracklist:
1. Virtus Tenebris
2. Purging Nefarious Vortex
3. Of A Moribund Vision
4. The Key Of The Moonpiercer
5. Empowered With Battlespells
6. Oracles Of War
7. In Perennial Twilight
Lineup:
Lord Vrăjitor – Vocals, all instruments
Rob Darken – Guest keyboards (track 4)
Record Label: Werewolf Records
     


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Edited 16 October 2021
 

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