Release DetailsLABEL Krankenhaus Records
RELEASED ON 9/11/2005
Black Northern Storm
posted on 9/2005 By:
I’ve been perusing the black metal checklist recently, and Canada’s Vanquished actually fill most of the prescriptions. Black Northern Storm uses the three-word template that Dimmu Borgir, unfortunately, set into motion, as well as uses BM-related words such as “black,” “northern,” and “storm.” In addition, none of the members are Dani Filth (Cradle of Filth), though their pseudonyms – Ben Jones, Chris Ray, Travis Lang, and Kevin Perreault – do need work in order to inject fear into the hearts of twelve-year old kids. So, having all that shit out of the way, I believe we’re ready to go, except that I don’t want to go anywhere. I want to stay right here and turn the CD player off, because this new venture from Krankenhaus Records is boring and I can’t stand it anymore!
Black Northern Storm is the quartet’s third full-length album in as many years as they’ve been unleashing material. With Vanquished, though, the overall presentation is that of nondescript, copy-and-paste black metal. It’s obvious that the guys soaked up innumerable output from the second and third waves of BM, and then transported the elements to their own neck of the woods. Naturally the primal, writhing vox have set up camp on Black Northern Storm, and the songwriting occasionally bears resemblance to the subgenre’s trailblazers. The musicianship is perhaps the most tantalizing characteristic to be found here, even though the originality met its demise as soon as “Ravaging the Shores” began. Needless to say, or maybe not, the production is horrendous – sucking all beefiness out of the antsy double-kick – and the drums radiate a “click” sound with each individual stab.
The songs, that Vanquished have put forth, run for four or five-minutes, except for “Ascendancy of the Boreal Wake,” which trots for nineteen. Strangely, thirteen minutes (from about 5:40 to 18:40) inexplicably feature the sounds of a storm. But that’s not all. “Outro,” the closing number, continues to project the storm until a solemn, piano melody overturns the former. And frankly there aren’t too many highlights to be found on Black Northern Storm, that I could remember, though a handful of transitions seemed to be throwbacks to Darkthrone.
Based on the score and the above paragraphs, I am not endorsing the latest from Vanquished. In a sea of mediocre BM, they’re just another ship passing by larger, more formidable vessels. Maybe once the group invests in better novelties they will fare accordingly. But, as it stands, Krankenhaus Records has stronger outings in its fold, so purchase those instead.
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