This latest from Sweden's Arckanum is listed as an EP, but at 37 minutes it's about 5 minutes longer than many metal releases that come out these days and are tagged as full-length CD's, so go figure. Antikosmos is 8 tracks of blistering black metal, sung in the old Norse Runic tongue, devoid of any symphonic elements or use of entensive melody. This is raw, primal stuff, featuring lots of raging blast beats, icy cold tremelo picked guitar riffs, and gravelly vocals. Antikosmos is also the band's first studio release in 10 years, and features guest guitar and backing vocals from Sethlans Teitan (Watain) alongside founding member Shamaatae, formerly of the band Grotesque, who later became At the Gates. Though this is well played and energetic black metal, the main problem here is that every song basically sounds the same, the tempo and instrumentation doesn't change much from song to song, so after you get through the first few tracks you basically have heard all there is to hear on this one, with a few exceptions. Highlights include the powerful "Rokulfargnyr" (perhaps the best tune here) and the deliciously old-school black metal styled "Su Vitran", a real corker of a song that I wish this band would do more of. End result is a short CD that has some good moments but doesn't carry enough throughout to make this more than a mildly recommended release for black metal completists.
4. Blota Loka
7. Su Vitran