06/02/2004

01. Monolithic Death
02. Rise of the 2nd Moon
03. On Funeral Wings
04. Dragon of Doom
05. Hyperion
06. Ocean Demon
07. Emperor of the Underworld
08. Trifid Nebula
09. The Doomsday Scythe
10. Riders of Endtime
11. In a darkened Tomb
12. Black Star Abyss
13. Wizard with the Magick Runes

Nicklas "Terror" Rudolfsson - Vocals, Guitars

Emma Karlsson - Bass

Daniel Moilanen - Drums

 


RUNEMAGICK: "On Funeral Wings"          runemagick                Aftermath Music

review  by dalia "gryphon_spirit" di giacomo____   

A masterpiece.  An extremely dark ,  heavy, sacral  Doom in cinemascope, that offers all what an obscure soul needs,  thanks to  a suffocating slowliness; lively, catchy  and hyper heavy riffings; mega bass vibes and modern atmosphere.


I was presuming that Runemagick  would have proposed an excellent  album in its genre, but my best expectations have been  exceeded by reality: this is not only an excellent album, On funeral Wings is simply ACE. First of all, i find many connections with the attitude of that cult  supreme work  that is Gothic from  Paradise Lost: same haunting doom  atmosphere, and of course the same touch of dark aura , though here everything celebrates  a triumph of sacral suffocating Doom.  Secondly, through On Funeral Wings, you can fully understand  what  a monument to obscure Darkness is . Thirdly, this is a vision in cinemascope and in sensurround, of large and deep breath, a journey into another dimension and time, an union between old Doom / Doom Death -school and modern hypnotic, surreal and sometimes even metropolitan atmospheres. This is a Doom varying between Heavy and Death, but also with many inclinations to Black. . Though presenting  a massive impressive music, On Funeral wings  delivers all the characteristics that allow this album to be anyway catchy, hypnotic, irresistible. You end up  in a  world of mystic Darkness. So , finally, least but not last, another typical feature of this work is clear: the Ritual attitude. Inferno and Heaven have many faces , like our cosmos has, and Runemagick's dark side is not made of an aggressive uptempo fire, but of an infinite, mysterious abyss of sidereal aura. And the rituality in slow -motion of this album makes the tracks mysterious , impending, gloomy, almost supernatural and sacral. It's a kind of ritual expression of grave, solemn heaviness. 

All  tracks show this attitude with rock solid coherence, showing an homogeneous logical path, with agreeable but merciless growling vocals.  I have the feeling that these songs  are steps of a musical adventure.  I also think that this adventure may appeal to a  wide audience : from Death fans till Black and Gothic ones;  important is  to be  really used to Darkness . But though faithful to the style, every song shows anyway  its own connotations, that make them  peculiar. We start off with  2 tracks,  Monolithic Death and Rise of the 2nd Moon, which  are haunting , obsessive and menacing   with  slow, serious, gloomy  tensions to Black , and we go on through the Doom/Melodic Death of the title track On Funeral Wings:  Doom with much nostalgia towards the 90's . Almost unintentionally we realize that the background, with sly  distorted effects and reverberations,  gets more and more strength. Through  track 4 , Dragon of Doom, we proceed one a way done of reverbering strings, mighty bass resonances , pounding drumming and modern hypnotic, slightly psycho, nuances. Dragon of Doom is catchy and begins to present  insertions of   guitars heavy like a steamroller,  but not only: you can also perceive  more varied string- sonorities and  pounding vibrations. Anyway the demonstration that this album should be seen like a progression  into the doom-y reign of Darkness comes   from tracks  5  and 6 (Hyperion - Ocean Demon), where the best characteristics of this album become fully recognizable, in particular concerning the use of reverberating , percussive guitars ,  weeping short moment of lead , and more lively tempo changings underlined by a rhythmic section that delivers a simply impressive heaviness.

 From track 6 the catchiness is also improved , the atmosphere is more and more magnetic and sacral , so that we can consider the very first tracks just as  a big intro for the brilliant  manifestation that opens out, revealing  itself.  The bass tones makes vibrate your chest , but  the lively Emperor of the Underworld welcomes us letting us understand that Doom is not only infinite slowliness, but nice midtempo too. Vocals become more evil and full of facettes,  while the loops are melodic,  catchy, aggressive. Emperor of the Underworld is one of the best tracks among the best, with some Gothic touch  too.  Trifid Nebula begins with bass grave chords : more doom is hardly possible. And track 9, The Doomsday Scythe,  varied , long, with a very good outro, is another doom and atmospheric bridge that, using also tremolo- similar sonorities and Black tensions,  leads us towards something that attracts us, and we can see that this pilgrimage is well worth, cause we are approaching tracks which are absolutely exceptional. Particularity of track 9 is that  it delivers a morphing scheme: starting doom, slow, obsessive , it develops indeed a propelling rhythm that, towards the  end becomes simply a merciless "tank". So, never think that the longer tracks of this On Funeral Wings remain like they begin! 

Track 10, Riders of Endtime, is percussive catchy, mighty, compressing with much of Death and many early- PL sonorities, in one word: superb and addictive, but if you think that the  peak has come is just only because you have still not heard the masterpiece track 11: IN A DARKENED TOMB , this track includes  all the features of this album in the best way you can think: its ingredients are a formidable catchiness; a lively, even hyperheavy rhythm; plus atmospheric,  hypnotic, sacred  and  metropolitan soundscapes,; the typical reverberating and percussive pushing strings;  obsessing but melodic slow passages that launch mid/uptempo galoppings. Merciless vocals that seem  to come from another dimension complete the picture: everything expressed basically through winning fascinating loops. In a darkened Tomb, imo,  is the core of the album and of our journey . It is the altar that you were looking for. Majestic  is also its outro with its bass vibes. Black Star Abyss is the ideal soundtrack  for a world made of  ancient civilizations and  exotic fantasy. A menacing, impending  bass echo  supports mysterious flute and triangle- like  sounds, strengthened finally by  a  mighty  piano. All this is  making a contrast in itself well mixed together: a tribute to all what is lost  with long psycho sidereal outro.  The album closes with a track, Wizard with the Magick Runes,  that has many similarities with  the fantastic In a darkened Tomb , but  with the first tracks as well, The ring  of Doom  is  complete. Our journey too.

Nicklas "Terror" Rudolfsson, in around 14 years of activity under the sign of Runemagick and after having passed, under this sign,  through 14 releases, has reached with this 15th work and this line up a perfect balance of instrumentation and vocals. Great the bass sounds (with big joy i see that their bass player is a woman) and in general  the whole soundscape . The production is very good, and even more admirable, considering the fact that Runemagick have worked also  in their own  Magick Sound Studio. So one can only come to the conclusion that so  called "little" studios owned by bands pay well back  all the efforts and care  put into them.  Moreover good music and good teams don't need  bombastic "packages" and make -up's. The sound is round, enjoyable, well-nourished without exaggerations. And with  well calibrating effects.  This music is the Force, and Force knows nothing but Force.

Rating: 10/10

 

dalia di giacomo    
 
 

presentation|news|reviews|interviews|live reports|specials|f**king bollox|tours|dates

  upcoming releases|underground|artwork|videoclips|MP3's|venues

     links|contacts|gryphonbook

[I Despair]


GryphonMetal.ch  June 2001-2004Niederrohrdorf - Switzerland

Contacts