Waldgeflüster – Meine Fesseln (Bindrune Recordings)

Sunday, 5th January 2014
Rating: 8/10

German “Forest Whispers,” Waldgeflüster have an old-fashioned black metal quality with immersible tones, emotive atmosphere, and nature-bound core, but with an unprecedented originality in folk attributes. Don’t let their light acoustic intros fool you, Waldgeflüster are much darker beneath the surface. Linking passions and tones of earlier albums, Meine Fesseln is a pensive complexity of melodic black metal.

For Meine Fesseln, metal-wizard Winterherz (on guitars, vocals, bass, electronics, and keys) collaborated with several guest musicians – on drums, Tobias Schuler of Der Weg einer Freiheit and Fuck You and Die; solo guitar and mandolin, Austin Lunn of Pantopticon and Seidr; violin, Johann Becker of Austaras and Vukari; kantele, Janne Väätäinen of Haive; piano, Lukas Danninger of The Course is Black; electronics by Aimo Fuchs; and additional vocals from Arvagr of Dagnir en Gwann. Tying traditional folk and metal instrumentals with sundry vocals, Meine Fesseln is viscously musical. Despite the eclectic instrumentation, the utmost addictive ingredient in this album is the vocals. Obviously the metal majority has an infinitely stronger craving for screams over cleans, otherwise it wouldn’t be very metal. Waldgeflüster provide a gracious amount of harsh with interspersions of harmonious to conduct a bittersweet blend of both positions.

Every measure of Meine Fesseln is captivating with nearly unremitting vocal verses and fluttering strums of various string instruments in leisurely tempos. Just when you feel a song coming to an end, thinking ‘damn I must listen to that again,’ you’ll realize no need to press that rewind button because Waldgeflüster just keep on playing. No short-cuts or unmethodical brief passages here.

With a superb blend of interchanging to synchronizing and echoing vocals, songs such as “Wenn die Morgensonn” evoke aggression and sorrow in an emotive duality. Similar to those of DSBM, Winterherz’s voice is more solacing than fierce, even (or especially) in his harshest pitches.  These melancholy pieces are expressively enhanced by the soothing sound of rain or hallow jangling of chains, preceded or followed by flooding instrumentals and lyrics defined by mysterious notions of nature. If you enjoyed Waldgeflüster’s previous releases, you will not be disappointed with Meine Fesseln.

Waldgeflüster official site