Ukrainian black metal horde Drudkh have slowly been making a name for themselves over the years, but it just might be with the release of A Furrow Cut Short that the band will take that step into genre greatness. Comprised of Roman (guitars/keyboards), Thurios (vocals/guitar), Krechet (bass/keyboards) and Vlad (drums/keyboards), Drudkh take their influence from the vintage Norwegian black metal scene, relying less on raging speed and more on cold, intense atmosphere. The wealth of keyboards are ever present throughout A Furrow Cut Short, with the two part opener "Cursed Sons" highly symphonic yet equally heavy with powerful guitar riffs and venomous vocals from Thurios. "To The Epoch Of Unbowed Poets" ups the speed ante slightly, complete with some blasting and tremolo picked riffs, but at 9-minutes, it's again another slice of wonderful progressive black metal thanks to the alluring keyboards tapestries and lengthy instrumental sections. Fans of the mighty Enslaved will love "Embers" as well as the near 19-minute, two part suite "Dishonour", as the rich, tonal colors created by the guitars and keyboards offer up a world of wonderful sounds, sprinkled of course with savage, black metal fury. The most furious track on the album is saved for last with "Till Foreign Ground Shall Cover Eyes", another lengthy piece that sees Thurios' ragged growling soaring over insistent rhythms and hard hitting riffs.
A Furrow Cut Short is without a doubt one of the best black metal releases you'll likely hear this year. It's epic, it's progressive, it's atmospheric, and it's savage, and my guess is Season of Mist have one of the hottest properties on their hands who are ready to rise to the upper echelon of black metal.
1. Cursed Sons I
2. Cursed Sons II
3. To The Epoch Of Unbowed Poets
5. Dishonour I
6. Dishonour II
7. Till Foreign Ground Shall Cover Eyes