Mondstille is an Austrian band from Vienna, surprisingly unknown compared to the quality of their music. They were formed in 2004 and it took them 4 years in order to release their debut album “Am Ende…” via White Bird Records. The album was printed in 500 digipak copies, but since the label closed soon after the release, only 100 of them were available and quickly sold out! In 2012 they return with their second full-length “Seelenwund” this time released by the band itself.
This group started by Markus and David as a project who would combine acoustic music and metal guitars. And while this separation between metal and acoustic tracks was more clear in their debut, this new album tries to combine all these elements into one. They call their music emotional black metal, but this term isn’t enough to describe them. The base of their music is melodic black / death metal, with an epic melancholic touch. Their brilliant guitar riffs are combined with amazing violins and acoustic guitars, but their use is very careful and clever. Acoustic guitars are mostly in some intros, outros, or calm parts in the songs, while violins are used both as an accompanying background and as a lead instrument in the metal orchestrations. Their melodic lead violin “solos” are simply magical and raise the band in another level. They have found though a perfect balance between acoustic and metal elements, so that none of them dominates over the other. What is really amazing is their excellent and powerful production, with a solid, crystal clear sound that many bands from major labels have never achieved. You have to add in the mix Markus’ passionate black death metal vocals, with lyrics only in German, to get a better idea of their music.
I think Mondstille is a great band that deserves the attention of every melodic black death metal fan. “Seelenwund” is a very professional work in general that can only be compared with the best releases of the genre. It might be self released, but it comes in a great digipak edition, with 12-page booklet and wonderful cover artwork. It contains 12 songs and lasts for over 64 minutes of highest quality music. It has a mainstream approach and sound quality in my opinion and I really hope they get the recognition they deserve. In their official pages below you can listen to their music and purchase this album for a very reasonable price.