Review Summary: "Depressive" black metal before the hooooooooing and the crying
After undergoing several name changes, Storm, the sole member of the finally named Strid released his first demo entitled End of Life
, and a 2 song self titled EP. Through these 2 albums Strid would play a vital role in pioneering the “depressive” black metal sub-genre. Although Strid by no means take the depressive black metal style to the same degree as many other bands in the future would (vocals that sound like crying, promo pictures including slit wrists) there is plenty of melancholy to be found on this EP.
The first track “Det Hviskes Blant Sorte Vinder” starts off with a very stereotypical intro including wind noises and other sounds; however this ends after a short 30 seconds and you are greeted with the tracks solemn sound. The basis of this track is actually led by a bass guitar melody played over simple guitar playing. This style was very unique at the time in black metal, and actually proves to be a good method of conveying emotion through the instrumentation. Throughout the song the bass guitar plays several different melodies as to keep you interested while still enjoying the mid paced somber tone of the track.
Vocally this album proves to be quite impressive. Storm has an affective painful sounding rasp, one that is powerful enough to convey emotion but not too intrusive as to disrupt the mood of the songs. The second song on this EP “Nattevandring” is structured very similarly to the first track with audible bass melodies and basic guitar playing. This track goes on for a bit longer than the first but doesn’t really drag due to a good amount of diversity. Percussion on this EP is very simple, throughout these two songs the drums mostly utilize simple snare beats and tom rolls. This style proves to be effective with the slower paced black metal, as blast beats in this type of black metal would be out of place and irritating.
Clocking in at a 14 and a half minutes, the Strid Self Titled EP leaves a bit to be desired, but is nevertheless an excellent piece of melancholic black metal that influenced many “depressive” black metal bands to come. Many groups have tried to convey the same emotions as Strid but either end up being extremely over the top or just exceptionally underwhelming. So if well produced, somber black metal sounds good to you, I highly recommend putting the Strid Self Titled EP on your download list.