Trolldom – I nattens sken (Genom hemligheternas Dunkel)

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Along the manifold side project bands of Swedish multi-instrumentalist Swartadauþuz, Iron Bonehead Productions brings forth the most ancient musical creations of Trolldom. The two debut albums 'Av Gudars Ätt' and 'I nattens sken (Genom hemligheternas Dunkel)' are masterfully crafted in the timeless, ageless classical way that can only belong to the realm of 90s black metal. 'I nattens sken (Genom hemligheternas Dunkel)' was written between 2004 and 2008. The recording of this marvelous debut moved forward in 2018 and the mixing took place in 2021.

Swartadauþuz takes a dark and brooding presentation of his sonic methods and delivers a grim, sinister manifestation of moonlight symphonies. The powerful impetus of the blasting drums in the opening track ‘Under vinternattens dystra fullmåne’ burst by the howling crescendo where the aggressive element of the orchestral work swell. By offering opulent quality the synth works in tandem to conjure up morbid images of nocturnal demons and grotesque horror.

As the crescendo builds up the tremolo-picked riffs and the grim screeching vocals soar into the atmosphere, the dense orchestration unearths obscure textures that give the music an expansive scale. Swartadauþuz’s gift for creating a dusky kind of melodies is suffused by the orchestral forte. The tremolo-picked riffs are quite abrasive and bring a certain air of darkness to the music. While the riffs are twisted into something much obscure, the drums provide a potent effect to the music.

Ondskans svarta broderskap’ is grandiosely rich and splendid, propelled by omnipresent synth and thundering blast beats. Drumming here sounds like a raging black ocean while the storming riffs and the symphonies are well placed and distinctive from each other. With a marvelous array of guitar riffs, the keyboard arrangements unfurl in swift waves of the amplified orchestra. While the songs are extended to seven minutes, they all seem constructed in a symphonic mold. There are plenty of haunting moments where the music becomes grim and ferocious. The solid permutations of the song structure have a gritty setting for a symphonic black metal style. Though the debut is inspired by the classic albums of the Swedish black metal band Parnassus, Swartadauþuz shows mastery in crafting an awe-inspiring piece of symphonic black metal.

Nattens Furste’ demonstrates the strong orchestral force that pieces with the furious drums while the tremolo balances the rhythm and the spellbinding synth peaks at powerful tremolo sections. The surging waves of the guitars are counterparts to the relentless drumming work, Trolldom explores the bleak landscapes of symphonic black metal. The rarity of such musical idiom makes ‘I nattens sken (Genom hemligheternas dunkel)’ among these rare albums that hold great value for fans of, Parnassus, Tartaros and Limbonic Art.

However, a song like ‘Inom nattens eviga rit’ settles in the mid-tempo of the driving synth and rhythm guitars as high shrieks flow with the cold riffing. One of the remarkable aspects of the album is the haunting piano notes that drift over the cold dark landscapes. The songs take many elements that add a grim beauty to the songwriting and the symphonic spectacle illuminates the most complex oeuvres of Swartadauþuz, thus proving to be a contemporary match to many veterans like V-Khaoz (Vargrav).

The composition captures the oceanic bursts of the blast beats on ‘I nattens sken (Genom hemligheternas Dunkel)’ and delivers chilling, infernal music that enraptures the listener with its freezing synth and high pitched vocals. The tremolo-picked riffs are overwhelming and exhibit the harsh fierceness of the atmosphere. Trolldom perfectly displays the elements of the 90s Swedish black metal on songs like ‘Nattmörkrets svarta skugga’ which has some of the most sinister synth melodies that will haunt you for days. The unsettling crescendo is paired with blast beats. The guitars are tremolo-picked, yet very bleak and melodically rich. Even in the most vigorous moments, the synth and the vocals remain spectacular in their grim quality.

On ‘Vid hans tron mörkret vilar’ the haunting synth lends space creating sorrowful melodies with the guitars brimming over the majestic atmosphere. Nothing elegant here, as each track stands on its own and sequences eerily. Whereas the orchestral touches provide a backdrop of menace to the swirling guitars, the opening of ‘Dräparen av livets veke’ combines sheer heaviness and rapid-fire drums to which the synth would add a gloomy sense of menace. Swartadauþuz has truly brought some of his best music: complex, dimensional and straightforward with plenty of aggression, the songs include plenty of piano passages.

The grand closure ‘Till ruinens svarta rike’ is an astonishing mixture of majestic synth and pounding drums, from the thick and heavy guitars and the beautiful piano notes swirling upon the blasting drums. The flowing tremolos give it an epic scale and the vocals are malefic and hateful.

REVIEW SCORE

  • Music / Songwriting 10/10
  • Vocals / Lyrics 10/10
  • Mix / Production 9/10
  • Artwork & Packaging 9/10
  • Originality 9/10
9.4

Trolldom exceeded the average expectations for a standard black metal album. The songs pound like a heavy thunderstorm. ‘I nattens sken (Genom hemligheternas Dunkel)’ imposes an intriguing display of majestic symphonic black metal in the highest quality which is rarely found in this genre today.

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