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Descent, very interesting band - 85%

Forest, August 19th, 2004

Vinterriket, a one man band of German nationality with a Norwegian name. Just makes you want to say "Eh?"

Anyways, onto the music. Vinterriket releases so many damn albums, demos, splits, tape, CD, and never any more than 500-800 copies. Guess he's too kult. The guy's quite talented. This was my first Vinterriket album and it was very interesting experience.

I had discovered Vinterriket via exploring ambient bands in a nekro mood. I saw the name and I said to myself 'a band with that kind of name has to be good!'. I searched around and saw CD's here and there, and eventually was able to receive a burnt copy from a friend. It was one of the ambeint ones, don't remember which, but I only listened to it once and threw it away. As time went on, I noticed that Vinterriket also does Black Metal. This sparked an interest again, and I proceded to look around again. I came across Red Stream.org and noticed they had a copy of this very disc, Finsternis (Darkness in German I believe). I ordered it, even though it was kinda overpriced, and it arrived later the next week.

After putting in the disk, my ears were greeted by a shitty production keyboard, followed by distorted guitars and some other instruments. I couldn't help but how damn melodic this was. It's very upbeat for Black Metal and very catchy. After the first two songs, I pondered upon the thought 'where are the vocals?' I went back to track one and noticed this weird hissing sound. After increasing the volume I noticed that there were words coming out of this distorted melodic symphony. Alas, the vocals! It took a little while to get comfortable, this is some of the worst vocals ive heard (production wise), but I later thought it gave it a unique feel.

As the CD continues, the tracks become different. You get a more mysterious feel and a lot more instrumental stuff, which is really quite beautiful. I think I like his clean vocals more than the black metal ones.

Overall this is a good CD, but the production kills many elements. If you like melodic stuff, you'll be in for a dark forest treat. I'll be adding more Vinterriket to my collection soon, hopefully I'll get as much pleasure out of them as I did with this unique album.

8.5/10