Vanum
Ageless Fire


3.8
excellent

Review

by Xenophanes STAFF
February 18th, 2019 | 89 replies


Release Date: 02/15/2019 | Tracklist

Review Summary: “Blood Ageless Fire Death”

So much of black metal is steeped in its own mythos. The aesthetics of its own history drive black metal forward while also holding it back. Born in the cold hinterlands, the genre’s identity is frostbitten—aligned with the frigid images of its birthplace and charred by its questionable past. But I’ve always imagined the course black metal may have taken was it associated with something else entirely, such as fire.

Vanum, whose reputation precedes them, make me wonder no longer. With Ageless Fire, the band offers up a scalding suite of black metal tunes; the molten and billowing cover suiting the explosive content well. Featuring K. Morgan of Ash Borer fame (as well as M. Rekevics from Fell Voices), Ageless Fire feels like a more immediate version of 2016’s disappointing The Irrepassable Gate; sturdy and daunting but much more stimulating. Moreso than either bands’ output thus far, Vanum’s sophomore record feels at times like a melodic black metal homage. Reaching back to Blood FIre Death-era Bathory, Vanum barrage listeners with anthemic tones and repetitive catharsis. “Eternity,” for example, spins simplistic riffs into a more complex tapestry of blast beats melodic reprieves. The callbacks are subtle, avoiding puerile hamfistedness. Vanum’s focus is always to look forward while nodding to the past.

Realm of Sacrifice was a pleasant but forgettable use of two incredible talents. Ageless Fire is the album Vanum needed to create. Dark, uncompromisingly heavy, and brilliantly combining the best of old school and modern black metal, it’s the work of a true rising force.



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user ratings (90)
3.6
great

Comments:Add a Comment 
TheSpirit
Contributing Reviewer
February 18th 2019


26530 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Yes, this album the SHIT. M Rekevics is such an underrated force in black metal right now. He's definitely up there with A. Lunn and Andy Marshall as far as one man wrecking crews.

Digging: Malfet - The Glimmering

TheSpirit
Contributing Reviewer
February 18th 2019


26530 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Also, gee wilikers, the album art!

DungeonBoy
February 18th 2019


7613 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

short, concise review. Album cover is enough for me to check this out. Ham-fisted is a fun little collection of words. Cheers!

Digging: Sentient Divide - Haunted by Cruelty

DungeonBoy
February 18th 2019


7613 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

Well this is amazing, thanks for posting

Hawks
February 18th 2019


73730 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

First album is really good but nothing special. Can’t wait to hear this though.

DarkNoctus
February 18th 2019


11004 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5 | Sound Off

this smashes the first album to bits.

Digging: Lychgate - Also Sprach Futura

DungeonBoy
February 18th 2019


7613 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

Yeah for sure, I remember not thinking much about the other one I heard, but this one has really made my day today. I have it at a 4.0 at the moment but could easily see it being higher. It's "epic" without the saccharine qualities, and the production does it so much justice. Good stuff!

TheSpirit
Contributing Reviewer
February 18th 2019


26530 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

ya'll should check out M. Rekevic's other jawns like Vilkacis. Shit is good.

zaruyache
February 19th 2019


22178 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

better than the first one yeah but still can't quite get the drudkh-y style down. It plays like it wants to be one of Rekevic's more lo-fi projects where that guitar style would really work, but just doesn't fit with a cleaner sound setup. Drums also have that really clunky sound like in Ash Borer.

Hawks
February 19th 2019


73730 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

About to jam.

DarkNoctus
February 19th 2019


11004 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5 | Sound Off

this doesn't sound anything like drudkh at all

Hawks
February 19th 2019


73730 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

Yeah I’m not hearing that lol. This rules so far though.

Dewinged
Contributing Reviewer
February 19th 2019


19073 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Sweet review Xeno, the little I heard of this was pretty good, gonna jam it in full soon.

Digging: Pure Reason Revolution - Eupnea

Hawks
February 19th 2019


73730 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

Ok yeah this rips hard. Way better than the debut.

DarkNoctus
February 19th 2019


11004 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5 | Sound Off

heck yeah hawks

Hawks
February 19th 2019


73730 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

Eternity might be my fav song of the year so far tbh.

zaruyache
February 19th 2019


22178 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

ok drudkh is just my shorthand for anything kinda repetitive now adays :p instrumentally this is closer to Rekevic's other stuff but less kvlt.

naughtcturnal
February 19th 2019


1444 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

1st album is good cascadian drudkh usbm

This one though is something else.... Was not expecting this to be THAT good

DarkNoctus
February 19th 2019


11004 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5 | Sound Off

"Eternity might be my fav song of the year so far tbh."



eternity is SO good, the fucking ending man

Gameofmetal
Emeritus
February 19th 2019


10746 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Has kind of a shimmering grandiosity despite sounding very straightforward that im really into.



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