Six years ago an album entitled Flesh Cathedral was released by Iceland’s own Svartidauði and since then the anticipation for another full length has been quite strong. Now the wait is over and the band has brought forth new music in the form of Revelations of the Red Sword. I for one have been waiting patiently for the day to come as Flesh Cathedral was a masterpiece in my opinion. If you are at all familiar with Iceland’s Metal scene it has a certain air to it and a special kind of sound that might as well be the molten lava spewed straight from the core of the fiery earth. Svartidauði are a prime example of said sound.
With this album the Black Metal masters combine their eclectic blend of furious melodies, harrowing vocals, and sonic drums. Gracing the listener with a tumultuous wall of atmosphere that transcends into otherworldly territories. Everything that makes the band click is delivered here with added finesse and vigor.
Touching on their song structure it took me a while to let this album fully digest. It does not hold your hand, instead you are left to your own devices to dissect and pick apart everything. This is not a bad thing as it allows the album to grow on you and discover new aspects that were not easily heard before. The songs are suffocating in fashion which is a staple in the bands sound. They often unleash into the progressive territory spiraling downward in perfect tandem with utter chaos. Sturla lends his vocals that add and enhance the albums overall haunting presence and the drums and guitar fuel the listening experience.
I chose not to do a track by track breakdown of this album as I feel it will take away from it. You as the listener need to take some uninterrupted time and let it all sink in. This is Icelandic Black Metal at its very finest and one I urge you to listen to. After six years of waiting this is a well deserved treat, well done gents.