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A gem of the Norwegian scene - 91%

MEMES, May 22nd, 2016

Every now and then, there comes a band that releases really good music and then splits up or vanishes off the face of the earth. Examples include Damaar, Jenovavirus and Skaven. Kvist is no different, they came out with 2 demos before releasing this album. They split up a year later and the members when on to fade into irrelevance. This album stands as their magnum opus, an absolutely stunning piece of black metal that most likely got overlooked at the time of release, seeing as how Burzum, Darkthrone and Dimmu Borgir released albums in the exact same month.

The music on display here is a cocktail of melodic black metal with keyboards thrown in. The riffs and the keyboards complement each other very well, coming together to give the music a life of it's own. The keyboards actually become extremely prominent in "Forbannet vaere jorden jeg går på" at around the 3:26 mark with this fantastic synth line being played. But for the most part, the keyboards don't intrude all that much into the music at all.

Speaking of riffs, they're some of the best I've heard within black metal. There are standout riffs all over this album, like the beginning of "Vettenetter", the entirety of "Min lekam er meg blott en byrde" and especially the 0:52 mark of "Forbannet vaere jorden jeg går på" where the riffs and keyboards come together to create something mesmerizing and beautiful. The guitar tone does hinder the music somewhat by being a bit too thin but the riffs still come through perfectly fine.

It should be pretty obvious that my favourite track of here is "Forbannet vaere jorden jeg går på" seeing as I've already fawned over it twice already. This song was present on their demos from 1994, albeit in a rawer version. The improved production on this album certainly helped to make the song better than it already is.

The drumming should be mentioned, seeing as how the performance is pretty consistent. Drummer Endre Bjotveit plays a flurry of really fast and consistent blast beats that serve as the perfect springboard for the riffs to leap off from. The general sound of the kit is pretty good, and it gets the job done in an extremely efficient manner.

It's still a shame that they didn't record a second album though.