The black metal movement in Greece has long been led by pioneer acts like Varathron, Rotting Christ and Necromantia. However, contemporary groups such as Acrimonious, Acherontas, Ravencult and Dødsferd took an unconventional approach to modern orthodox black metal. After debuting their EP outing “Under His Sway” last year Rotting Christ’s alumni Jim Mutilator (ex-Varathron) and The Magus (Necromantia, and Thou Art Lord) returns with one of the most anticipated albums of the year 2021. “As the Flame Withers” is set for a release date on January 25th via Pagan Records. Yoth Iria’s debut full-length is bigger in sound compared to the previous release. The album echoes with the scathing melodies of Hellenic black metal majesty.
The melodies are enhanced to create an epic sound overall. For example, choir arrangements are used to bring a sense of grandeur. The rhythm guitar is charged with thrilling effect and they contain plenty of catchy hooks. On the debut full-length album, Yoth Iria expands the songwriting to combine rich melodies. With the insertion of the lead guitars and flaming solos, each track contains memorable melodies. The opening track “The Great Hunter” kicks in and fires off the cylinders at full speed by propelling blast beats and tight riffing. While the use of chants adds splendor to the following track “Yoth Iria” the duo shows impressive abilities to make each track sound different than the other.
By imbuing the songs with the melodic hallmarks of the Greek black metal, Jim Mutilator and The Magus brought epic qualities. “Hermetic Code” is overwrought with mystic tones and catchy lead guitars that show the mastery of the guitar’s arrangements. The strength of the musicianship lays in the power of the epic melodies and the textural synth. The devilish chants on “Mantis” evoke the Hellenic mythology and bring a gripping cinematic feeling of might and awe. The flawless riffing and the menacing vocals are equally powerful. “As the Flame Withers” has a traditional Greek modality. The extraordinary heaviness and the vital riffing are successfully maintained throughout the duration of forty-seven minutes. Yoth Iria demonstrates a refreshing sense of creativity, as they offer some compelling qualities.
“The Red Crown Turns Black” is delivered by rapid blast beats. There is a strong unity from the strong guitar tone and the snarling vocals. When the drums switch to blast beats it creates huge reverberation. While there are many-layered melodies that will keep you entertained, the sense of majesty echoes loud. The melodies are paired with aggression and harmonizing guitars. “Unborn, Undead, Eternal” burrows the influences from the mid-era of Rotting Christ albums such as “A Dead Poem” and “The Sleep of Angels”. In every facet of the debut album, the rhythm guitars are skillfully embedded in the song structure. “As the Flame Withers”, is full of these bombastic melodies. The riffs are executed at a fast tempo as the songs are infused with elements of heavy metal.
The songs are full of galloping riffs, electrifying rhythm, and powerful percussion. Yoth Iria shows us new abilities on how they write epic songs. The strike of the thundering riffs is the main feature of this album. There is a multitude of influences that gives the songs a grandiloquent feel. “Tyrants” is one of the standout tracks which begins with a slow tempo. The use of strings in the opening section will give you goosebumps. The song is filled with dark occult melodies, whereas the inspiration of heavy metal is quite evident.
“The Luciferian” vary from fast to slow pacing style of black metal. With this variation the guitars create a slow tempo, almost like doom metal. The drums pick up the pace and booms in loud thundering beats, whilst the riffing remains intense and powerful. All these dynamics work quite well with each other. Even the bass guitar contributes to the music. Between the grandeur melodies and the gloomy eeriness of the synth, Yoth Iria has unleashed a powerful melodic black metal album. Highly recommended for fans of Rotting Christ, Varathron, and Necromantia.
Release Date: January 25th, 2021
Label: Pagan Records
- The Great Hunter
- Yoth Iria
- Hermetic Code
- The Mantis
- The Red Crown Turns Black
- Unbound, Undead, Eternal
- The Luciferian