On December 21st, 2022, exactly six years after their formation, the Finnish band Aethyrick unveiled their latest release. This time presented as a three-song EP, ‘The Seventh’ is a special cassette release featuring 18 minutes of new material.
The tracks on ‘The Seventh’ were recorded in 2020 and mixed in January 2021. Although it’s not entirely clear when the 2022 full-length ‘Pilgrimage’ was recorded and mixed, it’s possible that despite a later release the material on this EP is slightly older. Musically speaking, both releases are very much in line with each other, and the preceding albums. ‘The Roads Walked Alone’ starts off at a high pace with the band’s trademark strong emphasis on melancholic melodies. This is all complemented by hoarse, almost Legion (former Marduk) like vocals, a very dynamic drum performance and a nicely present but not too dominant bass sound. The keyboards are still minimal and mostly perform a background role, but the production seems to be slightly less sharp in the guitar department, giving more emphasis to the atmosphere than on ‘Pilgrimage’. Having said that, ‘The Seventh’ still has that rawness to it to counteract the melodies that, to me, made ‘Pilgrimage’ such a good album.
Despite that the three songs are all recognizable for the Aethyrick sound, they each have a slightly different feeling to them. The opener ‘The Roads Walked Alone’ focusses slightly more on the atmospheric, having sections that are somewhat like Drudkh or Burzum at times. The following ‘Astral Ecstasies’ has some of the best melodies the band has offered so far, sounding almost a little bit like Dissection towards the end of the song. ‘Turning the Wheel of Seasons’ closes the EP off in a more epic character, building from a low tempo all the way to ending ‘The Seventh’ with a climax of blazing drums, beautiful melodies and carrying atmospheric keyboards.
It seems ‘The Seventh’ will only be physically available to the lucky 100 that obtain a copy of the cassette, as other physical releases do not seem in the plans. A shame for those, like me, that chose a different format of our liking, but I can appreciate the limited special edition nature of a release like this. Support through Bandcamp is of course very much possible, and certainly worth considering if you like your Black Metal raw, melodic and Finnish.
The Sinister Flame
- Country: Finland
- Style: Black Metal, Death Metal
- Links: Homepage, Facebook, Instagram, Bandcamp