One of the most important things in terms of music is variation. It’s always a pleasure for me as a reviewer to listen to music, that exceeds the boring “cookie-cutter approach” and offers some interessting moments. Dråpsnatt is friendly enough to release an exciting full-length record that even offers some sovereignty and originality. Interested? Then read on!
The duo released two full-length records before and both of them were considered quite good. Although I didn’t really heard much of them, I dare to say that they follow their style, while constantly getting better at playing and composing. Even the production is way better than before, as it is quite clear and somewhat warm. The focus lay on the vocals as they are outstanding while the drums are relatively subtle (but you still can clearly hear them).
The record is quite multi-layered in terms of music as it ranges from quite heavy, slow and nearly depressive moments to some quite happy moments that could remind me of Istapp. The music reminds me quite often of the aforementioned Istapp but the music of Dråpsnatt is a bit colder. The record starts quite threatening with a combination of some droning synthesizer melodies and some higher, somewhat shriek ones, which soon transform into a “real” melody while the guitars are replacing the droning stuff with some rhythm. The compositions are, especially when compared to the aforementioned Istapp again, quite compact but not overfilled.
The tracks are mostly held in midtempo and quite rhythmic and melodic instead of fast and furious, although there are some passages that feature this “normal” black metal sound. The thick constructs, formed through the layers of guitar sound and the drums, are often accompanied by really atmospheric synthesizer sounds, which are able to enhance the created atmosphere quite a bit. They never become cheesy and could be compared to bands like Mistur, which are known for getting the right balance. There is a steady interplay between the guitars and the keyboard as they are battling on who is giving the tone (e.g. the melody). The vocals are full of effect and sound quite mad and woeful. Similiar to the interplay between the guitars and the keyboard the vocals are pending between extremes: There are some quite deep, low pitched and slow (nearly spoken) passages, the quite mad screams and sometimes even catchy clearly sung passages.
The drums should be praised at least as much as the vocals, guitars and synthies, as they are often playing some innovative beats instead of the five standard beats that are out there (although they are, of course, here as well). Nearly everything on this record has to be praised, as it’s done so well. The orchestration and vocalisation was professionally done and the songwriting is really good. The changes in tempo and dynamics are done fluently and naturally so they aren’t forced. The only real flaw might be, that the bands own sound can be a bit similiar from song to song, but that isn’t too bad.
I’ve got the feeling, that it was a bit mistake not to listen to records of Dråpsnatt before as Skelepht is everything I want from melodic black metal. The tracks are really well played and composed as they are quite multi-layered e.g. varied. I really have to compare them to a colder version of Istapp, as everything is somewhat similiar, but better done. Fans of the aforementioned band, or anyone who likes melodic and atmospheric black metal, should buy this record as you can’t do anything wrong!
Date of release: April, 14th 2012
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