Anthems to the Welkin at Dusk



by Eternalnow USER (7 Reviews)
August 24th, 2009 | 8 replies

Release Date: 1997 | Tracklist

Review Summary: One of the greatest symphonic black metal releases by one of the greatest symphonic

Emperor, one of the greatest metal bands in the history of metal music released their second LP in 1997 titled 'Anthems to the Welkin at Dusk', and it is one of the best symphonic black metal albums ever created. Though nowadays the symphonic black metal genre is overcrowded with clones and sub-standard bands, there really is only a few names one needs to concern themselves with if they desire to delve into the depths of said genre; Emperor ranks at the very top of that small list.

Formed in 1991 amongst the 'black metal inner circle', Emperor was known as a consistent source of great symphonic black metal output. Over their career they have released 4 LPs and various EPs, with Anthems to the Welkin at Dusk being their second full length release. 'Anthems...' is chaotic, intense, hypnotic, and the perfect example of symphonic black metal done right. One of the main things that really stands out about this recording is the surprisingly clear production, which allows each instrument to shine forth, and the album is all the better for it. Many times great albums are misunderstood due to horrible production, and for a band as technically sound and composition heavy as Emperor great production is a must.

On the musical side of things there is lots of interplay between the guitars and the keyboards, with both instruments taking turns being the lead and rhythm. Keyboard sections are technical, complex and imaginatively arranged, and its fairly easy to say that the keyboards are the shining star in this band. The guitar offers up variety between tremolo picking to straight metal riffing. The drum work is rather amazing as well, going from lightning fast blast beats to breakdown sections with precision. The bass guitar, as is with most black metal bands is inaudible, unfortunately it would have been nice if bass player Alver was given more space to breath. Ihsahn's vocals are nothing short of amazing; his trademark higher register shrieks and screams are fitting for the symphonic atmosphere the band brings. Overall the band performs admirably together, offering up one of the greatest albums in black metal history, one that would be copied and emulated for years to come, but never duplicated.

Musically Anthems to the Welkin at Dusk is worthy of its elite status, and remains one of the watershed albums in the symphonic black metal genre. The keyboard work alone is enough to merit repeated listens, and the dense atmosphere of each track will ensure that those repeated listens are met with your full attention.

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user ratings (949)
other reviews of this album
Kyle Ward STAFF (4.5)

psycho888999 (5)
Emperor's crowning achievement. Anus.com doesn't know what they are talking about....

Per Ardua Ad Astra (4)

bigdickedguy (4.5)
Simply breathtaking...

Comments:Add a Comment 
August 24th 2009


i think your summary got cut off

August 24th 2009


"One of the greatest symphonic black metal releases by one of the greatest symphonic" That's not really hard to do. Solid album/review.

Digging: After Dinner - Paradise of Replica

August 24th 2009


the review was excellent though, very detailed, but a bit short

I have this but haven't listened to it yet

August 24th 2009



August 24th 2009


Album Rating: 5.0

This album has just never clicked with me. It's good but for me just not excellent.

Digging: Deafheaven - New Bermuda

August 24th 2009


Album Rating: 5.0

One of the greatest symphonic black metal releases by one of the greatest symphonic

This needs to be fixed to "One of the greatest metal albums known to man".

If I had one complaint about Anthems to the Welkin at Dusk it would be that a good majority of the songs can have the tendency to run together

I've listened to this album over 200 times and I can hear the difference between each track clearly. In fact, I think that's why this album clicks with me better than most black metal albums. It's consistent yet each song has its own feel.

Welcome to the site dude. The review was ok but for a 4.5 rating (especially an album of this size and magnitude) needs to have a little more justification behind it. Plus, what has been said in the review has already been covered several times before on this site. Still, keep up the good work.

August 24th 2009


Album Rating: 5.0

Thanks. Yeah, first review...kind of shoddy.

Meant to give it 5 by the way...oops

But I do think that some of the tracks 'can' run together at times, as they can with many symphonic black metal bands.

August 25th 2009


Album Rating: 4.5

Emperor is glorious in every concievable way though.

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