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Atmospheric Journey! - 95%

Mijmering, February 4th, 2013

"Avifauna" is Fauna's third full-length album and I didn't know they were releasing a new album before a friend of mine notified me about it. Their previous albums were astonishing: ''Rain'' and ''The Hunt'' are known for their duration (over 1 hour) and are characterized by energetic, yet melancholic black metal. I really loved their previous albums and I did hope "Avifauna" would be as good as ''Rain'' and ''The Hunt''. Care to know?

Yes, it is!

Avifauna is already my favourite album in their discography. Beautifully produced, atmospheric black metal in its purest form, yet this is not a polished record. The acoustic guitars are very sharply mixed, but the vocals are mixed in the background and the black metal parts are quite harsh. I love it, though.

The duration of this record is, of course, 01:13:53 long. Avifauna kicks off with ''Soaring Into Earth'' and a lot happens in this song. First of all, the acoustic parts are amazing in this track, being really neo-folkish and melancholic. The kettle drums are a notable thing as well and they give a very deep and eerie feeling to this song. However, let's not talk about separate parts of the song, but about the tracks in general.

Every song builds its own way to a climax. Clean vocal parts combined with acoustic parts are the base of the tracks, but they are combined with some very intense blast beat parts and a vocalist with a voice full of despair. It's not that typical black metal voice, but kind of like screams of agony. I never heard such a voice and it suits the music so well. I want to hear more!

The three main tracks are divided by two interludes that are created, in my opinion, to process everything you just heard. There is no such band as Fauna. A noteworthy fact on the album are the cello and violin parts, especially the outro of ''Soaring Into Earth'' and the intro of ''Syrinx'', which are very nicely done. There is this ambient background sound combined with cello parts and acoustic guitars. You get really sucked into the tracks and when you're finally in, you get smacked in the face by beautiful and atmospheric black metal.

Strong atmosphere, screams of agony, acoustic parts, kettle drums, blast beats...this album is perfectly fit for my ears. If you like black metal bands that can really playing you into a trance, this is a must buy!