Nordgeist – Frostwinter (Kunsthall Produktionen)

Wednesday, 28th April 2021
Rating: 7/10

A new one-woman solo act within the black metal scene, Frostwinter is the full-length debut from the Siberian Nordgeist. With four tracks hitting around 50-minutes in length, one can get a pretty good idea of what T is striving for with this material. While it works as a whole, there are also a few slight pitfalls to overcome with future material.

Atmospheric, melodic, and occasionally raging as well, Nordgeist hit all of the marks you’d hope to see with this type of material. The dreamy melodies nicely contrast with heavier moments, while the snarling rasps ramps up the intensity when needed or act as a source of anguish during some of the more melodic sections. Each of the four tracks have a certain black metal elegance to them with regard to the melodies, which can shift gears between more triumphant and epic sounding or take a melancholic tone. Due to the longer track lengths, this is more ‘mood’ material than anything else and it does have a certain cinematic appeal to it – particularly in the use of soundscapes in the background (see “Sorrow” in particular). To that end, this is also the one problematic piece that comes up with Frostwinter. With such long lengths, sometimes the mood seems to carry on for too long. There’s not enough of the urgency to sweep through a 13-minute track consistently, and it feels like the songs do meander a bit longer than the atmosphere calls for.

Frostwinter does do many things right within the atmospheric black metal construct. With some slight editing down of the material in future offerings, it will likely help boost Nordgeist as a strong player in the future, given some of the breathtaking melodies and blastbeat-driven elegance T is already putting forth.

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