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Wolftower – Crownless King of the Dismal Dark Empire [EP]

wolftower – crownless king of the dismal dark empire [ep]


Wolftower is a one-man raw Black Metal project from Finland, courtesy of Vyrtur (also of Chamber Wraith and Dragon’s Relic). This is the first full-length from this project and its nine songs clock in at exactly 30 minutes. This is excellent raw, melodic, and up-tempo Black Metal with well written songs, plenty of catchy riffs, and expertly placed synth to add that touch of atmosphere when needed.

A dungeon synth intro (of which several appear again the form of interludes between songs) doesn’t overstay its welcome and quickly gives way to ‘Dragon Mountain’, with pounding and primitive drumming and ice cold riffing. Vyrtur’s vocals are raw, but not without feeling and are perfectly placed in the mix with a nice amount of reverb. Beautifully laid synth comes in at about the 2 minute mark, before the song pummels away for the remainder.

The album follows this format for most of the way. ‘Icy Tears Falling From the Sky’ has a galloping guitar line and some great cymbal work on the drums during the chorus that really evokes early Bathory if they were to add some Gehenna style keys. ‘Eternal Winter of Hate’ just punishes you straight way, Judas Iscariot style, only to give way to another great keyboard line at the pre-chorus and a perfect tempo change into the chorus.

This is some really well done raw Black Metal, while not necessarily original, draws inspiration from the best of the first and second waves. I do sometimes wish Vyrtur’s vocals were a bit more decipherable, as there are some powerful moments here that would be great to know the words being sung. Another minor complaint is the odd tuning of the drums. I dig the primitive sound, but there are parts when a louder snare or cymbal could add a bit of power to what are very well written songs. With that being said, this is highly recommended if you’re a fan of the rawer side of black metal. These are superbly written tracks that ebb and flow nicely, keeping you engaged until the last tortured note.

Inferna Profundus Records

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