Astral Winter is the personal project of Josh Young (also in Atra Vetosus, Hammerstorm, Lost in Desolation). This Australian melodic black metal band from Tasmania was formed in 2008 and after the demo “Illustrations of Death”, where Josh had another singer in the band, Astral Winter became solo project again. In 2011 the debut album “Winter Enthroned” was released by Immortal Frost Productions (also released the demo) and in 2012 Josh composed and started recording the next full-length album “Forest of Silence“. In the end of 2012 he started composing some instrumental acoustic / ambient tracks, which actually turned to be his second album, entitled “Perdition“, released on March 2013 via Immortal Frost Productions again.
I have to admit that when I see such projects from black metal rooted bands, I don’t expect too many things, not because of bad music quality, but mostly because of their somehow monotonous repetitive nature. After listening to “Perdition” though, I was really impressed by the result, which I surprisingly prefer compared to their debut album! There are 8 songs in the album and they last for almost 39 minutes. The music is based on beautiful acoustic guitars and enchanting melodic piano parts, enriched from time to time with strings, violins, choirs, bass and flutes. Songs are mostly instrumental, with only few background vocals and some spoken parts in a couple of songs. Of course synths are present in the album, adding an orchestral soundtrack-like character in their music. Astral Winter don’t propose something new, but this album overflows by a magical seducing atmosphere. Josh’s compositions have a unique quality, with a peaceful tranquil mood, transferring your mind in other places!
If you like acoustic melodic experiments, then you shouldn’t miss this album. The band has already composed its next black metal album and I really hope they borrow and include the magical quality of “Perdition” in it! Either way, Astral Winter has proved with its first two works to be a really promising band that I will keep an eye on it for sure! “Perdition” is released by Immortal Frost Productions in a limited to 300 copies standard jewel-case edition, with a 4-page booklet illustrated by Antonio Jimenez of Brutal Disorder Logos. Their few lyrics are in the booklet. Astral Winter is already composing material for a fourth album! Visit their pages below for sound samples and ordering info.