Tuesday 20 June 2017

Thormesis - Trummerfarben


1. Intro - Aetas Nova
2. Trummerfarben
3. Waheelas Fahrte
4. Lodernd Flammen
5. Die Klagen Der Einode
6. Verblasst
7. Im Stille Wachen Die Toten
8. In Herbst Trugen Sie Mich Fort
9. Outro - Vale

Pagan black metal hasn't been a sub-genre that I've explored too much on here; however, the stark artwork that adorns the fifth full-length "Trummerfarben" by German act Thormesis drew me in. The Bavarian quartet has been together (in various line-ups) for just over a decade and self-released their first album "Gehet Hin Und Kampfet" in 2008. They've steadily released music since then, including an album Dusterwald Produktionen and one via well known German label AFM Records, before teaming up with MDD Records in 2015. "Trummerfarben" follows their 2015 release "Freier Wille - Freier Geist" and it was released on February. The band are due to play alongside Mayhem and others at Wolfszeit Festival in Thuringen, Germany in late August.

I’ve always found German black metal to be quite austere. Thormesis opens “Trummerfarben” with the gentle intro Aetas Nova, which features strings and folk drumming. It flows directly into the title-track and it’s a grand song indeed. Very much like war metal initially, Thormesis makes use of powerful drum blasts and driving yet melodic guitar, which backs up the shrieked black metal vocals. This isn’t as harsh as I was expecting it to be Waheelas Fahrte has some great melody and it’s pretty catchy too. You wouldn’t think that band with Thormesis’s live image would be, but don’t just a book by it’s cover. There’s even some clean singing towards the end! Lodernd Flammen carries on in the same vein. It’s hard to pick out the lyrics and they are singing in their native tongue but that’s no issue, as the instrumentation is what sets them apart from their peers. At time it seems ti air on the side of punk, which is no bad thing. The instrumental passage in the middle of Die Klagen Der Einode is reminiscent of early Metallica and it adds an extra layer to a song that’s already blistering. Everything so far on “Trummerfarben” points to a very accomplished band indeed. Verblasst contains elements of thrash and black metal and it’s hard to believe that at this point, you’re over halfway through the album. With the exception of the intro and outro, no songs drop under five-minutes so Thormesis are doing exceptionally well to keep it engaging for the listener. The twin-guitar work only reinforces that last point. That punk sound is back again during the first part of In Stille Wachen Die Toten. Everything about this song feels heavier, but that’s just because the pace is upped slightly, The music itself is still clear and thanks to the solid production/mastering job the really musical sections stand out. The atmosphere that flows from penultimate song Im Herbst Trugen Sie Mich Fort is captivating and it only gets better. That catchiness I mentioned earlier is back in spades. You’ll lose yourself throughout it’s 6+ minutes and before you know it it’ll be over. The outro Vale is a beautiful piano piece that rounds out a surprising album. Thormesis is so much more than just a pagan black metal band. They seem to transcend the sub-genre here and show that their experience counts for a lot.

You can stream and watch the official lyric video for album track Waheelas Fahrte via Youtube below:-

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