Snøgg are a Black Metal duo from Slovenia who have been consistently pumping out releases for the last five years, but China…Sienna…wait, I can get this…”Chhinnamasta“…nailed it…is their debut full-length. Snøgg are a hard band to describe musically. At the start of the album, I thought “Oooh! Industrial Black Metal” but, before I knew it, I was knee-deep into a riff that wouldn’t have been out of place on Iron Maiden’s “Powerslave“. There’s another riff on “Y (Ddraig Goch)” that reminded me of “Heart of the Ages” era In the Woods…, and still others that are just straight-up, blastbeat Black Metal. And that, in a nutshell, is Snøgg. A witch’s brew of styles seamlessly melded together.
The first track is a ripper, and the second track is pretty damn good too. But, don’t expect consistency here because “Stream of Blood” is nothing like “Y (Ddraig Goch)“. Then comes “Void of Valor” which is, sadly, a complete snooze-fest of sound effects, keyboard, a clean guitar outro, and noises. I’m pretty sure there was a goose call on this song, but I can’t be sure because I drifted off thinking about whether or not I needed a haircut soon. You could safely skip this track without being any worse off for doing so. Thankfully, Snøgg quickly return to form on the last two tracks on the album.
Snøgg are attempting to create something unique and have, for the most part, done so. But, there are a few weak points here. I’m not a major fan of (most of) the vocals. If I had a wish in Black Metal it’s that bands admit that vocals are tricky, and that not everyone can pull them off. Another issue is that the songs have a tendency to drag on at times; some song outros could be culled significantly without detracting from the songs themselves. Lastly, and oddly given how different Snøgg are, a gripe I have is that some of the song names lack originality; “Stream of Blood“, for example. But, these things are forgivable. China…f**king hell…”Chhinnamasta” is very cool and worth checking out.
Rating – 4/5
Check it out here.