October Falls – A Collapse of Faith (Debemur Morti Productions)

Wednesday, 20th March 2013
Rating: 8/10

One of the more unheralded bands in all of the underground, October Falls have made a career out of doing what so many are doing, but better. And by better, we’re referring to the highest-caliber of atmospheric folk metal; shit that is infinitely better than any high-ranking Viking/Pagan metal act. Frankly, there’s maybe one or two bands that could hang with October Falls, one of them being Moonsorrow, which makes sense – drummer Marko Tervonen does time in both bands.

Picking up where 2008’s monstrous The Womb of Primordial Nature left off, A Collapse of Faith continues with the band’s simplistic, yet superfluous take on atmospheric metal. In essence, this is another joyride though the fields of epic metal, without the unnecessary bombast and frill. Instead, there’s a quiet underbelly of acoustic guitars that gently guide all three songs (brilliantly titled “A Collapse of Faith Part I, II, III”) through familiar terrain. The riff selection is choice, while the arrangements leave little doubt as to what’s being attempted.

Well-placed melodies augment “A Collapse of Faith Part II,” especially at the front-end, which gives it the necessary forlorn atmosphere to drop into a somber acoustic guitar section. The propensity to do this cannot be lost throughout the album; this is arguably OF’s main calling card and when used properly like in this instance, it results in some sterling moments, ones that recall the glory years of …In the Woods, early Ulver, and Opeth circa 1998.

Why October Falls isn’t higher up the atmospheric metal ladder is quite the mystery, perhaps their name is a bit too common (i.e. October Tide, October File, October, etc. etc.). Fact of the matter is A Collapse of Faith is both striking and beautiful, featuring the type of ebb and flow that made a lot of us flock the folksy metal without the awful pretense in which it operates under now. A must-have.


(This content originally appeared on Blistering.com)

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