Belgian black metal bands never achieved the apogee of worldwide recognition as the Scandinavian bands, but the newer generation is exerting to put Belgium back on the map again. Thronum Vrondor is one of the examples that can be judged by the good quality of the music. Even though the band was formed back in 2007 they remained under my radar until recently. “Dies Tenebrosa Sicut Nox” which is the fourth album by this Belgian three-piece is considered as a turning point in the band’s career. The distinction between the past albums must be kept in mind because what we have here is a melodic representation of the post-millennium black metal. However, the newest album varies in the noteworthy standard of the polished production, captivating lead guitars, and grim vocals.
The chilling frosty guitars on the album opener “To Eternal Life” show the dynamic force of the music, as there is an increase in the focus of the swelling riffs. All these factors seem to be refined in the set of eight tracks that are carried out by the excellent craftsmanship. In the course of thirty-seven minutes, the songs take smooth transitions in tempos. The drums rattle swiftly with the guitar hooks offering melodic passages and sheer aggression the fans would appreciate. “Odium Humanis Generis” gives way to the guitars to shine the role of raspy vocals captures a growing sense of darkness. The qualitative traits of the Swedish melodic black metal add a malevolent consistency to the riffs. In terms of songwriting “Dies Tenebrosa Sicut Nox” centers on the excessive blast beats and the scale of power that is laid by Crygh (drums, vocals), Vrondor (guitars, bass), and SvN (vocals).
Though one can notice the reverberating tremolos on tracks like “Worms” and “Ravenous Cult”, the catchy blend of the rhythm and lead guitars is one of the strongest elements of Thronum Vrondor and I must say that the Belgian trio shows a standard talent. Some of the songs break out into mid-tempos and that’s when the rhythm is mainly emphasized. Other highlights of the album are “The Wolf Must Roam Free”, which contains sporadic fast-paced tempo and dense riffs. In spite of the minor changes, the songs are on par with the 2019 album Ichor (The Rebellion). The fourth album is released by the Belgian black metal label Immortal Frost Productions, thus joining the expanding roster of bands such as Azaghal, The Stone, Corpus Christii, and others. Regardless of the slow atmospheric parts scattered between the tempos, there is plenty of powerful riffs dominating the songs. In fact, “Dies Tenebrosa Sicut Nox” has a modern touch of unorthodox style. Apart from the opening track, everything seems to revolve around the same idea that has been introduced in the early works.
There is not much variation on the remaining songs because the music is mostly stripped down with powerful strikes from the drums and blackened pitches of the guitar arrangements, which are carried out to present an evil menace. “Cleanse This World of Filth” truly stands out for the slow guitar chords and the frenzied tempo. It is interesting to see how the band conveys their brand of melodies by providing a sort of semi-chromatic palette.
The closure “What Grace Is There Left to Fall From” provides catchy melodies and razor-sharp tremolos, from this moment onward till the end of the track, the band brings some unnecessary elements like the ephemeral clean vocals. The Belgian trio offers unsettling tempos, focusing on blast beats without failing not to remiss the blazing riffs maintaining the spark rekindling the burning flame of the black rebellious hearts. In this context, Thronum Vrondor brings a similar style to the post-2000’s modus operandi of the unorthodox manner that comes almost parallel to the recent currents of Swedish black metal.
Thronum Vrondor on their fourth album has combined subtle atmosphere and a twisted concoction of modern melodic black metal. Although I still deem the band can achieve greater inventiveness and ingenuity in their upcoming future releases, for now, this comes as a moderate recommendation for fans of melodic black metal.
Release Date: May 28th, 2021
Label: Immortal Frost Productions
- To Eternal Fire
- Odium Humanis Generis
- Ravenous Cult
- The Wold Must Roam Free
- To Pierce The Heart of Lions
- Cleanse This World of Filth
- What Grace Is There Left To Fall From