Chuck Schuldiner Project

Tuesday, February 2, 2016

Urgehal - Aeons In Sodom

Urgehal have long been an incredibly important band in the black metal scene - so of course Trondr Nefas's untimely passing in 2012 was devastating. Yet out of those ashes came a piece of art that I think might already be the black metal album of the year. Bringing together members of nearly every Norwegian black metal band of import, from Darkthrone to Carpathian Forest and even Shining among countless other, Aeons In Sodom is a sort of endlessly exciting family reunion that pays tribute to all that made Urgehal great.

Half written by Trondr and the other half put together by Enzifer Aeons In Sodom is more than just a whose who of black metal. It is an album that resonates on a quasi-spiritual level. The touches of black n roll slotting in next to more frostbitten paeans (Often largely dependent on who is providing guest vocals) is endlessly fascinating to a music nerd like me. Furthermore, Urgehal has managed to live up to the promise that they had been hinting at for years and it makes you wonder what Trondr Would have been capable of if he hadn't passed. Everything about this record is perfect, from the ominous, blood rousing opening to its fatal finale and I think that any black metal fan would have a hard time denying its power. 

Aeons In Sodom balances everything I, and so many others, have loved about Norwegian black metal over the years. It has the trademark chaos and devastation, but also the refined and understated beauty. Toss in a hectic solo or two (The one on Blood Of The Legion is especially good) alongside gloriously satanic lyrics and it rapidly becomes clear why this album is going to ring out over the years. Rarely does the black metal community get together like this, but if ever an occasion merited it was this one - and so Urgehal shine on, one final gem in Trondr's crown as he fades into the past. 

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