Review Summary: The Darkest Realms of Beauty...
Beauty is one of the most subjective ideals in the human mind. What might be awe-inspiringly attractive to some might be disgustingly grotesque to others. Because of this, beauty is hard to describe, despite the adoration it causes being very visceral. No matter how subjective this concept is, how possible is it for a subgenre of extreme metal to be anything more than just frightening" Surely one can be forgiven for assuming black metal, which has an extensive history of church burnings, murders, and worshiping all sorts of demonic beings, is purely violent and horrifying.
This is the part of the review where these preconceptions are swept away and one tells that this album is purely full of traditional beauty, but that is not the truth. There’s still dark tremolo-picking, sinister screeches, rapid fire percussion stylings, and low fidelity production techniques. These diabolical foundations are still found in spades on Trolltaar
, yet there is something especially engrossing in how Ancient approaches the music. In this dense macabre, the melodies strike through, creating something that haunts the listener’s very soul. Much like a dark chasm, Ancient paints it’s vast landscapes with the dark unknown, blending darkness and allure into the world it builds with desolate soundscapes. The atmosphere built is rich and vivid, while being foggy and murky.
In this way, the high-tempo drum rhythms and the guitar picks and solos work in conjunction with the vocals and the droning bass lines to add a sense of urgency to the bleak world created, as if some beast is traversing the plains. As this release ventures onwards, the swelling exigency grows larger until it reaches a harsh climax at the end of “Fjellets Hemmelighet,” marking a swift ending of the world built. The cataclysmic downfall of the rich atmosphere is just as heart-pounding as the whole release, bringing a harsh downfall to the world of Trolltaar
. With this ending and the melancholic atmosphere built through the experience, a form of brooding apathy belongs to the dark melodies that belong to this record. Said dark melodies tell a tale, a tale that is wrought with bleak fog. In a strange, twisted way, that fits my description of beauty.