Dynfari – Vegferð Tímans (Code666)

Thursday, 5th March 2015
Rating: 8.5/10

Iceland, with its limited sample size, usually steps up to the plate in the context of atmospheric metal. The obvious suspect would be Solstafir, even in spite of their gradual drift from their core sound, but lest we leave out Kontinuum and Potentiam, two outfits who have flown under the radar (per the usual with Icelandic metal), but are of utter significance because of their immense atmospheric jostles and songwriting aptitude. Toss Dynfari’s name into a hat, a two-man outfit who with their third album, Vegferð Tímans, figure to be a factor from this point forward.

Cold, icy black metal this is not; rather, Dynfari’s sound (and appeal) lies largely in the spacious and gorgeous melodies they are in major supply of. It’s the type of approach that has served such black-gaze outfits such as An Autumn for Crippled Children (the unquestioned best band of this variety), Germ, and TotalSelfHatred well. Dynfari’s guitar melodies are simply magnetic, as found on opener “Ljósi╨,” and album standout “Hafsjór,” which bobs and weaves with sinewy precision, if you will. There’s a surplus of calm restrained moments that cut away from the hearty riffing, though, and they’re the high points of the three-part “Vegfer,” which close the album in – as expected – grandiose fashion.

Code666, a label that specializes in fringe, artistically challenging outfits, which Dynfari certainly is, has another winner on their hands. Beyond the band’s label and their sterling reputation, Dynfari is an instant face to watch in the slow-building Icelandic metal scene. The variable qualities of Vegferð Tímans are numerous, the type of album that sits well in any lovely little atmospheric black metal compartment. It’s all the same, though – this is a must-hear album, all the way.

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