The second album by Dissection-inspired German blackmetallers Thulcandra, Under a Frozen Sun is rich in black metal aesthetics and should appeal to many fans of the genre.
After a melodic intro built on an acoustic guitar riff, 'Blood and Fire' explodes into an as-black-metal-as-it-gets blastbeats-and-tremolo section which leads the listener into expecting an all out chaotic black metal album, but soon the listener learns that there is more to Thulcandra's sound than just that, as the tune proves to be full of melodic leads, melodic riffs and sections that sound more like traditional metal and thrash metal than black metal.
And this pretty much characterizes the album, as Thulcandra seamlessly weaves in and out of black metal evil and melodic sections, and, while the base sound definitely is black metal, as the black metal elements are dominant, I really like the integration of melodic leads and guitar harmonies into the overall sound on this album.
I can imagine that some more hardcore black metal fans might not be too keen on the melodic approach, but I think it works very well and generates an interesting contrast with the more traditional black metal elements, the result being a focused but also quite dynamic album in Under a Frozen Sun.
1. In Blood and Fire
2. Black Flags of Hate
3. Ritual of Sight
4. Under a Frozen Sun
5. Aeon of Darkness
6. Echoing Voices (A Cold Breeze of Death)
7. Gates of Eden
8. Life Demise (Unanimated cover)