Today’s selection is the last entry to the Catching Up series for now. Afterwards, the site will continue with Metal in September and, hopefully, some pieces to celebrate album anniversaries for the Looking Back series. This last part of Catching Up features triumphant pagan anthems, mind-bending technical black metal and a catchy prog excursion.
Havukruunu – Uinuos syömein sota
Finnish black metal legends Havukruunu return with their strongest offering so far. Uinuos syömein sota is a gaunlet of triumphant battle hymns. From the awe-inspiring opening choirs erupts a powerful force of epic and heavy black metal. The band channels melodic leads, fiery guitar solos and ferocious vocal performances into an untamed assault. Only the mix leaves something to be desired, as the instruments could do with more immediacy.
Gorrch – Introvertere
Next up is a gem from the black metal underground. Introvertere is the second EP by italian Gorrch and a tour de force in technical black metal. The performances are razorsharp and precise and the production is satisfyingly warm and compact. Recursive riffing and rearing, melodic guitars race along with the unabated blasting of the drums. Introvertere is a step forward into even more uncompromising and harsh territory for the band. A bold and promising move that should not go unnoticed.
Haken – Virus
British prog veterans Haken return with the unfortunately aptly titled Virus. Admittedly, at first I thought this album was the result of a particular presence of mind. Both musically and conceptually, however, Virus is a continuation of the band’s 2018 release Vector. This time around, the band appears more alive, the compositions more dynamic. The tracks are abound with catchy moments and transition smoothly from one to the other, not least because the latter half of the album is a song in five parts.