Genre: Atmospheric Black Metal Black Metal
Label: Black Plague Records Metallic Media
Auðn is a new atmospheric black metal band from Hafnarfjörður of Iceland, a country with many interesting releases lately. The band was formed in 2010 and released its eponymous debut full-length album “Auðn” in the end of November 2014, via the US labels Black Plague Records and Metallic Media. It was the first official release of the band, without any demos before it, thus “Auðn” was my only contact with their music.
From the first moments of the opening track “Klerkaveldi” I was impressed by the quality of their sound. The band is usually labelled as atmospheric black metal, which is a quite generic term to describe their music. They play black metal of a very melodic atmospheric nature, with many influences from the pagan black metal genre and several elements of epic black metal. They have a very balanced sound, with wonderful guitars, equally melodic and heavy, accompanied by very interesting drums. There are no synths in the album, still their orchestrations sound very rich thanks to their quite diverse compositions and the technical multi-layered guitars. The extended use of beautiful acoustic guitars, adds an even more natural color to the overall somber atmosphere of the album. Hjalti Sveinsson’s screaming vocals is for sure the most “extreme” element of Auðn’s music and his passionate aggressive singing fits more that perfectly to the band’s dark melancholic sound. There are totally 7 songs in the album and its duration is a little over 36 minutes. You might think it’s quite short for a full-length, on the other hand the album is really amazing from start to end, without any fillers or boring moments. All of the lyrics are in their native language and you can find them in the CD booklet.
As I have already mentioned, I was surprised by the quality and maturity of Auðn’s debut. The fact that 2 of their members, (Andri – guitars and Hjálmar – bass) have been recently touring the US with Dynfari and Negură Bunget as session members, says a lot. If you are into melodic atmospheric black metal, you better give this band a chance. ”Auðn” is co-released by Black Plague Records and Metallic Media in a limited to 500 copies jewel-case CD edition. It includes a 6-page folded booklet with the beautiful cover artwork by Víðir ‘Mýrmann’ Þrastarson. Recently “Auðn” was re-released by the Greek label Nebular Winter Productions in tape edition, limited to 200 hand-numbered copies on transparent cassettes, with professional label sticker on both sides and 3 panels j-cards. You better visit the band’s official pages below for more details and sound samples.