Monday, April 26, 2021

Full Length Review: Sylvatica "Ashes and Snow" Format: (Satanath Records) by Dave Wolff

Band: Sylvatica
Location: Aarhus, Midtjylland / Nyborg/Odense, Syddanmark
Country: Denmark
Genre: Melodic Death/Folk Metal
Full Length: Ashes and Snow
Format: Digital album, compact disc
Label: Satanath Records
Release date: April 20, 2021
While searching Satanath Records’ Bandcamp profile I hoped I stumbled across something worthwhile with Sylvatica’s sophomore full length. What I found was melodic, heroic, and extremely caustic; something like old Amorphis but with twice the conviction and technical capabilities, with some Amon Amarth and Enslaved poured into the cauldron. I got the impression of setting sail through an endless landscape of icebergs, watching the sky, the horizon, and even the water catch fire in the wake of your sailing vessel. The carefully thought out, meticulously arranged, classically tinged intro promises a memorable collection of tracks on the way. “Ashes and Snow” doesn’t disappoint as its consistent heaviness and relentless drumming add infinite weight to its classical and folk/pagan/symphonic elements. It’s a marriage made this side of Valhalla that’s not too overbearing for the unprepared metal fan who hadn’t expected such crushing songs. Sylvatica travels all the way back to 1994/95 and develops the density and thickness of progressive death metal as well as its atmosphere and proficient melody. The deep, guttural, and higher-pitched vocal fry are more than suitable for an album like this, fulfilling the role of a berserker captain leading his throng (represented by the melodic backing vocals) into battle, and the guitar solos are enough to stimulate listeners of Yngwie Malmsteen. All these fundamentals are properly layered and granted as they need to be, coming across as natural results of the songwriting. For a band’s second album, “Ashes and Snow” is presented as a masterpiece, and it’s more than worth a chance if you’re looking for music that’s simultaneously heavy and epic. –Dave Wolff

Jardén Schlesinger: Vocals, guitars
Christian Christiansen: Guitars
Thomas Haxen: Bass, backing vocals
Jacques Harm Brandt Hauge: Drums

Track list:
1. Daybreak Ashes and Snow
2. Pillars of Light
3. Creation
4. Cosmic Strings
5. Helios
6. Halls of Extinction

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