Album: Tanker som rir natten
Label: Aftermath Music
Genre: Black Metal
Release Date: May 14th, 2021
For fans of: Taake, Vreid, Emperor
On the more underrated side of Norwegian black metal scene, we have Djevel as one of the bands involved. The band, even though can be considered as a hidden gem in the scene, has been around for over 10 years and surely has gained their own cult following. After two years, finally they are back on releasing a full-length album, namely Tanker Som Rir Natten. It is their seventh full-length studio album, signed under Aftermath Music. While there’s no official statement that Djevel is a supergroup, all three members of this band are, or were, also involved in several renowned Norwegian metal acts. On chants and guitars we have T. Ciekals (of Ljå and Mørkgeist fame) who also manages to do the composing and write the lyrics, on vocals and bass we have Kvitrim (of Black Majesty and Vemod fame), and on drums we have Faust who is infamously known for Emperor.
This album manages to surpass boundaries by experimenting on various forms of distortion and eclectic blast beats, but also keeps the ferocious rawness intact. It’s almost as if the band is taking their listeners on a spiritual trip to Valhalla. While still sticking to the roots of conventional black metal, this album still passes as enjoyable to those who aren’t too familiar with the genre. Aside from blast beats and distortions, this album is also strong of tremolo picking-related elements, helping build a grim-sounding atmosphere. There is a convergence between slow-paced, mid-paced, and fast-paced parts of the riffs involved in this album; they complement each other in the most vicious way possible. The listeners can also hear a bit of synths as the album progresses halfway, and the fourth track of this album, which also happens to be the title track, features a solemn acoustic instrumentation. It’s like a rather tranquil interlude before going back into heavier sounds.
If I were to choose a favorite track or two, probably I’d go with “Englene Som Falt Ned I Min Seng, Skal Jeg Sette Fri Med Brukne Vinger Og Torneglorier” and/or “Maanen Skal Være Mine Øine, Den Skinnende Stierne Mine Ben, Og Her Skal Jeg Vandre Til Evig Tid”, which are, consecutively, the first and second track. I personally have a soft spot for fast-paced distortions and blast beats, so when you give them a listen, you’ll know why. The overall sounds of this album presumably would remind its listeners of early Taake materials or Funeral Moon-era Darkthrone, even though this album has slightly cleaner production than those two. What makes this album spectacular is also the fact that Ruben Willem (who worked with big names like Okkultokrati, Haust and Vreid in terms of technical stuff for their albums) is in charge of the mixing and mastering. And to know that T. Ciekals was a part of Ljå is a mind blowing fact because even though I have heard of Ljå before, it was not so long ago that I discovered that he was a part of the band.
Tanker Som Rir Natten, which can be translated to “thoughts that ride the night” in Norwegian, is indeed an album that would make its listeners existentially contemplate on thoughts that ride the night.
1. Englene Som Falt Ned I Min Seng, Skal Jeg Sette Fri Med Brukne Vinger Og Torneglorier
2. Maanen Skal Være Mine Øine, Den Skinnende Stierne Mine Ben, Og Her Skal Jeg Vandre Til Evig Tid
3. En Krone For Et Øie Som Ser Alt, Tusind Torner For En Sønn Som Var Alt
4. Tanker Som Rir Natten
5. Naar Maanen Formørker Solen I En Dødelig Dans, Ber Jeg Moder Jord Opp Til En Siste Vals
6. Vinger Som Tok Oss Over En Brennende Himmel, Vinger Som Tok Oss Hjem
Total Playing Time: 56:51