Among the lesser-known groups of Sweden that adhere to the raw and fundamental aspects of black metal is the band Armagedda, formed in 1999 by the duo A.Petterson (guitars, bass) and Graav (guitars, vocals). Though the band’s general sound is somehow similar to other acts such as Darkthrone, Craft, and Shining. Since the phenomenon epoch of the Swedish black metal Armagedda has been sprawling on the foundation of old school and managed to bring something unique to its fans. Their sophomore Only True Believers marked as an epitome of the Swedish melodic black metal. And now after long years of waiting, the duo are finally back with their newest album titled Svindeldjup Ättestup.
Once the eerie intro Det sjuttonde året fades out, the blast of the drums and tremolo-picked riffs become intensified by the rapid strumming. Ond Sprititism kicks off in old school manner with the cold iciness of the guitars and the focused melodies front and center. Armagedda’s defining style is brought by somber melodies with reverb guitar riffs and the drums are played swiftly. At first, I thought that Svindeldjup Ättestup echoes with the retrospective bewitchment of the Nordic melodies.
But the sooner I realized that the latest album is somewhat twisted assembled by organic percussion and offers many swift changes. The following track Likvaka begins with an odd riff that manages to bring an eerie atmosphere to build upon slow guitar riffs that have varied melodies. The melodious tune of the guitars and the vocal delivery fits into the classic style of Swedish black metal. Svindeldjup Ättestup presents something old and new to the fans with solid aggression and the melodic facets of Swedish black metal demonstrated. The range of the songs is expanded as they comprise some modern elements like black and roll.
The gradual increase in aggression and atmospheric intensity builds up slowly at a regular pace. Several songs on Armagedda’s newest album hold the old inspiration from bands like Darkthrone. Djupens djup for example reflects the primitive aggression of black metal which makes the songs sound repetitive and sophisticated at the same time. The searing riffs and tremolo pickings provide heaviness. The attempt here is rather twisted and dominated by the monotone upbeat tempos. The drums’ performance is measured by rattling beats to slow-paced cadence while on other songs the guitars add an extra dose of rhythm. The majority of the album is balanced between foaming melodies and slow heavy riffs. While there is still a touch of rawness in the songs, the melodies and tremolo pickings are professionally layered with hooks.
Svindeldjup Ättestup builds slowly yet there are a few songs like Guds kadaver (En falsk Messias) that offer the Swedish aesthetic style of melodies. The rhythm is profusely added into the song structure and another great aspect here is how the band managed to add captivating elements within the long duration of each track that varies from six to seven minutes. Svindeldjup Ättestup is an organic album achieved by experimental elements, although there are moments when Armagedda conveys the traditional style of black metal. The duo has successfully merged contemporary and old trademarks of black metal.
Flod av smuts is seven minutes long and moves into the contemporary style of black and roll with some nice grooves. Perhaps the best part of the album is the intense guitar work. The final track Evigheten i en obrytbar cirkel bares ostensible influences from bands like Mgla. With the drums and the guitars maintaining the pace, the song uncovers a modern inclination to black metal. The melodious chords and the slow rhythm of the guitar riffs show an outstanding scale of technical prowess.
Sixteen years of waiting, the Swedish duo Armagedda returned with a great album. Svindeldjup Ättestup is structured upon sophisticated songwriting that contains aggression and catchy atmospheric guitar rhythms. Highly recommended for fans of Satyricon, Darkthrone and Mgla.
Release Date: May 22nd, 2020
Label: Nordvis Produktion
- Det sjuttonde året
- Ond spiritism
- Djupens djup
- Guds kadaver (en falsk Messias)
- Flod av smuts
- Evigheten i en obrytbar cirkel