Celebrating 10 years of existence, the Ukrainian pagan black metallers Drudkh return with their 9th already full-length album!! This over-productive group has already become a very big name in their genre and a new release is always raising our expectations. They have already signed in a major label like Season of Mist, who also released their last 2 albums. “Вічний Оберт Колеса” or “Eternal Turn of the Wheel” comes out 2 years after their previous album “Handful of Stars”.
The album lasts only for 36 minutes and begins with a small acoustic intro, before the 4 main songs. Drudkh manage to retain their characteristic sound, despite the fact they always improve their production. This album has a more typical pagan black metal approach, with a very powerful sound in guitars and drums. Synths are mostly in the background, but their contribution in the melodic lines is of great importance. The band continues to prefer mid atmospheric tempo in its songs, but this time I think the speed is a bit up. Dark melancholic riffs in epic pagan rhythms create an almost suffocating atmosphere, where Thurios’ passionate and expressive screams sound like the only way to escape. Except for the intro there are no ambient, folk or acoustic passages in “Eternal Turn of the Wheel”. The band has chosen a more solid and heavy sound throughout the whole album. Their great composing skills and the small duration of the album help Drudkh to avoid repetition and add another quality chapter in their huge discography. I think this album looks back in the pagan roots of the band, giving a break in their more experimental side. Their lyrics are once again in their native language, dealing about nature and the ancient pagan cycle of the seasons; each song is dedicated to one month: March, August, October and December…
I think “Eternal Turn of the Wheel” is a very characteristic Drudkh work that will satisfy most fans of the band, both the old ones and the new. It is based on the very emotional compositions and the great sound the band has built all these years. It is released in a beautiful digipak by Underground Activists, a sub-label of Season of Mist. You can visit their page on Season of Mist to listen to the song “When Gods Leave Their Emerald Halls” and decide on your own.