Monday, January 3, 2022

Full Length: Gurthang "Hearts of the Hollow" (Immortal Frost Productions) by Corban Skipwith

Band: Gurthang
Country: Poland
Genre: Black/funeral doom metal
Format: Standard black vinyl, opaque Halloween orange vinyl, transparent blood red/opaque Halloween orange swirl with multi-color splatter vinyl
Release date: November 26, 2021
You know, when I started to listen to this 2021 album I had no idea what to expect. From the cover art to the album title to even the band name I just had no idea what I was in for.
I try nowadays to stay clear of the descriptions listed because I often feel indifferent to the influences and normally come up with a different conclusion entirely of how it all sounds so I’m going to be trusting my own ears for this one (granted my half-deaf ears).
So, among these eight tracks I ended up hearing something I don’t think I’ve ever heard before, and that was a Black Metal’s interpretation of ‘Progressive Metal’. It’s weird to think about I know! But hear me out.
This album doesn’t have the normal elements of ‘Prog Metal’ as you’re used to it, but I want you to imagine if a ‘Black Metal’ inspired band took that sub-genre into their own hands and manipulated the sounds and clichés to fit its own style and this is the album you would get.
I hear so many things on this album I just don’t hear in frequent ‘Black Metal’ associated things such as
-Long, drawn out guitar riffs
-Mystical and Dreamy production
-Technical guitar work
I mean as you can imagine these elements are normally associated with ‘Prog’ but when they come together on here it makes the commonly overly dark and raw aesthetic of ‘Black Metal’ a hell of a lot more ‘exceptional and mesmerizing’ which I found really interesting and something I’d like to hear a lot more down the line!
If you’re looking for something different, something that you’ve probably never tried before then please give this a try! And let me know what you think! Corban Skipwith

A.Z.V.: Vocals, guitars, effects
Stormalv: Bass guitars
G.H.: Effects, ambiance
Vojfrost: Keyboards, effects
Turenn: Drums, percussion

Track list:
1. Vide de Cœurs (prologue)
2. Structures of Constriction
3. Spasms of Reflection
4. Concealed Beneath
5. In the Shrines of Self-Creation
6. Hearts of the Hollow
7. The Apathy of Decadence
8. Constriction (reprise)

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