Here’s an interesting find of mine. I don’t know how many of you have heard this Danish death crusade previously, but if the answer is not, then do listen to Carach Angren. A brief introduction of the band would comprise of the fact that they are barely a decade old ( 7 years to be precise) and are surprisingly underground, because their music is quite the kick. The funny part is that the first time I heard of them, they had described their genre to be haunting theatrical black metal and couldn’t help but roll my eyes at the ridicule. The fact that their music IS in fact hauntingly theatrical here and there was quite a slap in the face. This album Lammendam was their first album after a set of demo and EP. I haven’t heard them, so I can’t compare them. But the theme of this album is quite like a myth or legend of ghosts and evil in general. Also, I happen to relate their name to the great Tolkien and his fantastical land of Middle Earth.
I think we should take a moment here, and remember the man who created a fantasy so mythical that, if I as a seer say so correctly, would be the religion of the world.
Getting back to the album, the vocals struck me first. Forgive me for taking another LOTR reference, but they sound like Danny Filth mated with Morgoth. They are beautifully ethereal despite being the deepest of gutturals. They really have given life to this album, especially while he (Vox- Seredor) narrates parts of the story of the theme. Well delivered. Second thing that hits you is the work on the keys (by Ardek). The part about the hauntingly theatrical comes from this instrument. It is used extensively and sets the perfect underscore for a haunting experience. They are used quite uniquely, very unlike the trend of orchestrated or strings which is now getting only too popular amonst melo black groups. It is almost gothic. Only not.
Apart from these, the production as such of the entire album could’ve been more exuberant or showy but I’m glad they kept it simple. No unnecessary idolization of the typical black metal sound/music. The band that comes to my mind if I were to compare this to any at all would be Dark Fortress or even Keep of Kalessin at some places. My favorites would include Heretic Poltergeist Phenomena and The Carriage Wheel Murder.
I am definitely following this band up. I’d recommend one listen to them on myspace – CA @myspace or reverbnation once prior to buying (:D) their albums. Not everyone I know likes keys served with black metal. Nonetheless, give it a listen definitely. It’s a definite yes from my side.
I’d give it about 7.5/10.