Saturday, May 31, 2008

Smohalla - Nova Persei (V)

Smohalla is really a fine example of the sort of progressive, atmospheric movement of what one might call post-black metal. Slo and company build up entrancing layers of keys, synthesized strings, acoustic guitars, heavy guitars, clean vocals, and more raspy vocals into a truly epic and glorious blend. While the complex layering of the music would tend to create something more noisy and harsh, this release fits into itself wonderfully. Even shifts to discordant riffs and blast beats just lend another taste to the atmospheric bewilderment of Nova Persei's tribute to the dreamworld.

Without ever abandoning the atmospheric layers, Smohalla freely shifts between well-written piano interludes and triumphant choruses, dark riffs that seem almost like black metal, thrash, and even doom. Everything remains, through effective transitions, consistent tempo, and distinctive Smohalla guitar sounds and ambience, part of the same story. The songs are distinctive and beautiful, and everything is well done. Recommended for fans of any of the artistic elites of black metal. Smohalla has earned its place long before the twenty minutes of Nova Persei have passed.

I understand that this is the last copy of Nova Persei, but the project isn't abandoned. I recommend following Smohalla's progress and snapping up anything you can lay your hands on.

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