Grim Sköll is the personal project of Baal Taran, who formed the band in 2007. He is also member of many other Mexican bands, like Benatnash, Eidyllion, Dazhbog and Zonei, while he was an ex-member of Ereshkigal. In other words he is deeply involved in the underground Mexican scene. With Grim Sköll he explores his pagan side and this is his second album, after 2008’s debut “The Eleven Rivers of Hverlmir”.
The band’s music is pagan black metal with ambient and symphonic elements. The term symphonic here refers to synth-based compositions (not real orchestras) close to Summoning and Hellveto sound. As you can already understand their music is quite melodic, thanks to the rich layer of keyboards that accompanies their black metal riffing. The production is the typical of this genre, but I believe that acoustic parts could sound more natural. Of course we are talking about an underground release and their sound in general is more than ok, suitable for the music the play. Both guitars and synths are at the same sound level and none of them is in the background. There is a dark epic mood in their music, as well as a feeling of nostalgia and depression. The vocals are extreme black metal screams, fitting perfectly to the songs. I like this kind of music a lot and Grim Sköll are good at it, especially in the parts where their black metal is overloaded with synths. On the contrary, I have to admit that the acoustic ambient parts aren’t at the same level, mainly due to their bad sound. In my opinion the best songs of this album are the fifth “Vanish Light” and the next “The Woods Shall Cry Forever”, with their rich orchestrations, full of great melodies. The lyrics are in English dealing with dark, pagan and nature inspired themes.
Overall, Grim Sköll is a very good band offering us a nice album of orchestral pagan black metal. “The Woods Shall Cry Forever” isn’t something you’ve never heard before, but it is a very well composed album with many great melodies that I definitely enjoyed and I believe most fans of the genre will also like it. If it only was more solid and balanced (less, or better ambient parts and songs) it would be a really great work. It is released by the Mexican label Azermedoth (like their debut) and it is limited to 1000 copies. You can get a taste of their music in their official myspace page.
Grim Sköll @ Myspace
Originally published on HeavyMetalCosmos