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Trelldom’s debut 1995 album Til Evighet is the first glimpse we as listeners get of the band as well as the band’s now world renowned front man Gaahl. Like many of you I’m sure you discovered Trelldom through Gaahl’s involvement in “Gorgoroth” a much more renowned Norwegian black metal band. As a fan of his style I decided to give Trelldom a deeper look, and was pleasantly surprised at what I found.
Trelldom is a band whose sound is very much akin to similar black metal bands of the time with their production and style of playing (i.e. Darkthrone or Burzum). However for me what separates Trelldom from the other bands is Gaahl’s unique vocal style which over his career has evolved to encompass spoken word and ancient Viking singing. The other two members present for this release were session members from other bands who display tight playing and creative musicianship.
On this release almost every song has either raw cold or very catchy rhythmic black metal style guitar riffs. Some of the highlights for example can be seen on tracks such as ‘Disappearing of the Burning Moon’ or ‘Chains of Solitude.’ These musicians style of playing go very well with Gaahl’s vocal style of the time which can range from tremolo picking and blast beats to even slow haunting doom style riffs as seen on the title track ‘Til Evighet.’ The vocals are very different from the vocals that listeners would hear on Trelldom’s latest album “Til Minne.” Gaahl for the most part uses very high pitched shrieks which work to great effect with the music that goes with it. Despite this being very different I personally find it much more effective in capturing the true black metal atmosphere then his later attempts with Trelldom.
The structure of many of these songs on the album is also very well done with interludes and bridges. This is done to such an effect that not a single song on the album is boring. All have interesting combinations of music and vocals to make every song effective. The atmosphere on this album makes you think of a cold, dark, winter night with the ambient sound effects. The raw production also adds to this by making it even grimmer. The best example of superb atmosphere would be the outro to “Til Evighet” when the music transcends from the progressive black metal riff to a melancholic orchestral sound with Gaahl’s vocals still present heightening the intense atmosphere.
In conclusion I would recommend this album to anyone who is a fan of raw early 90’s black metal (in particular Gorgoroth, Darkthrone or Mayhem). Pick this album up or at least give it a listen. This album has everything a true black metal fan would ever want; raw atmosphere, excellent musicianship and interesting song structure.