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Finsterforst: Zum Tode Hin

Their name means "dark forest" in German. It is a reference to the Black Forest in their native land and I cannot think of any title that is better suited to a band's style of music. Pagan folk metal is what it's called and these guys are masters of the sound. I have never heard this brand of music done in such a glorious way as Finsterforst bring it to you.

On this their second full length release, the band has set the standard for which all bands of this genre aspire to attain. With liberal use of such instruments as an accordion and tin whistle, these guys have come up with a blending of musical styles that is absolutely irresistible. As heavy as anyone when the guitars of David Schuldis and Simon Schillinger are unleashed, it is the ambience of Johannes Joseph and his accordion that makes this album a work of art. The magical counteractions between the light and dark are amazing. Toss in some very serene acoustic passages and you have some of the most breathtaking music to come down the pike.

Something that this album has given me is an appreciation of vocals as another musical instrument instead of being just the narration to the music. Marco Schomas is a growler in every sense of the word but he also does all the lyrics in German and you will not care as he provides the conduit between the heavy and light that this album is filled with. I look upon it as one would the scat singers who never sang a complete word at all. He just lends another texture to this multi-layered musical treat.

The album consists of 5 songs running in length from 11 minutes plus to a little over 21 minutes. Each song is an epic of grandiose proportion which takes you through many hills and valleys and is given ample time to grab a hold of you and not let go for awhile! Each hits you in a different way but all are magnificent in their own right.

I cannot say enough about this album. It is one of those treats to the ears that any metal aficionado will have to have in their collection. This band captures something in their music that very few achieve. That is the ability to completely enthrall you with a dynamic sound that you don't only hear… you feel. It takes you away and will makes you visualize your interpretation of what Finsterforst is trying to say. This is as good as it gets and is easily one of the best albums I have found this year!

Track listing:

1. Urquell
2. Das Grobe Erwachen
3. Seines Gluckes Schmied
4. Sturmes Ernte
5. Untergang

Added: October 12th 2009
Reviewer: Scott Ward
Related Link: Band's Official Page
Hits: 2830
Language: english

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