posted on 1/2010 By:
File Shadowfost under “inexplicable band name decisions.” Perhaps in Italy, the band’s home country, ‘fost’ is a word loaded with grim significance. In English, though, it appears to be a misspelling of ‘frost’…or an allusion to Bay City, Michigan’s Friends Of the State Theater. or perhaps the band is interested in Fiber Optics Survivable Techniques?
Regardless of the reason behind the whacktastic name, Shadowfost’s music is decidedly less open to interpretation. Essence/Mindscape purveys straightforward, polished black metal in the Dissection/Naglfar school—nothing more, nothing less. Aside from some unusually strong bass playing and a slight death metal lean, Shadowfost have devoted themselves to the time-honored tradition of metal subgenre study.
Consequently, your interest in Essence/Mindscape will vary directly with your desire to hear this heavily-traveled style interpreted yet again by a slightly above-average young band. Drummer James Barbari injects some Behemoth-style death metal muscle with his dense (and mercifully un-Protools’d) performance on “Fear Shaped World.” Likewise, bassist Giovanni Scarabelli is shockingly active given this band’s style, as heard during the off-kilter breakdown and subsequent groove of “Forget Not Forgive.” For the most part, though, Shadowfost content themselves with delivering blastbeats and icy, speedpicked harmonies on songs like “Wrath of the Caged” and “Sense of Life.”
I personally like this style, so Essence/Mindscape was an enjoyable listen for me. But the enjoyment I derived from it was definitely of the brainless variety, and I very much doubt that I will return to it in the future. For the moment, Shadowfost are far from required listening, but a small subset of the larger metal population might find Essence/Mindscape worthwhile.
Register to post comments.