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'The Black Northern Ritual'
(Indie Recordings)

jools green

Jools Green


'The Black Northern Ritual' is the third full length from Posthum and follows their 2009 self titled debut and 2012s 'Lights Out'.

They are a black Metal outfit who prior to this release have managed to remain unknown to me. The trio consist of Morten on drums, Mats on guitars and Jon on guitars, bass and vocals, who formed in 2004 and hail from Nannestad, Norway.

The album is a seven track, forty minute offering of mostly mid paced black metal, some straightforward, classic styled and some more atmospheric with melodic elements alongside some really good black Metal riffs maintaining that all important cold atmosphere and completed with powerful and effective, vocals that manifest as a throat searing rasp of tortuous proportions that are also lyrically comprehensible.

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'Demon Black Skies' opens with a stomping mid pace and has a wonderfully catchy repeat riff that stays with you, building to a frenzy towards the latter part, then tailing off reflectively towards the close; an excellent classically styled black Metal track and superb album opener.

'Condemned' is a faster and more intense track with some noteworthy pounding drum work. It does drop to a slower pace midway eventually talking on a slower, chilling persona, but none of the intensity is lost.

The intense mid pace continues with 'To The Pits', awash with pummelling drums and blackened riffs made all the more interesting by melodic elements that punctuate the track and a superb, darkly emotive, closing guitar segment that is terminated by a face searing scream of impressive proportions.

Title track 'The Black Northern Ritual' has a very militaristic feel to the higher profile drum work accompanying the opening rhythms, the high drum profile is maintained almost throughout the track, the pace plunges to a blackened doom laden one midway, picking up again as the drum work returns, awash with crescendos of crashing cymbals and accompanied by intense riffing.

Slower, deliberate, bleak and dark, 'Vinter' is a hugely atmospheric and beautiful instrumental.

The superb 'A Disappearing Sun' is an intense riffing track with pummelling drum work and here Jon seems to push the boundaries of his vocal range that little bit more also.

Album closer and longest track 'North' at almost eleven minutes, double the length of any of its predecessors is a superbly atmospheric track, black, reflective and mood rich with a dirty edge to the sound also, a perfect ending for the album.

The excellent artwork for 'The Black Northern Ritual' by Kjersti Mortensen is a superbly stark, clean and crisp, monochrome and deserves a mention; it's highly suited to this excellent release.

I have no favourite tracks as it is all end to end superb black Metal. Go check this album out; meanwhile I am off to seek out their first two releases. Enjoy!

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