The production on The Plight of Wanderers is enough to turn blood to pure ice. It’s the perfect kind of recording that allows for that intimate sense of frozen fragility and icy winds to permeate every fibre of your being, while at the same time retaining enough clarity and power to showcase the band in the best darkened light. Also, the bass can be heard. Bonus.
The singer has a capable blackened rasp that has a certain level of charisma and personality injected into it. The performance is authentic and does the music justice.
Which is where we start mentioning the music itself. This is melodic black metal with plenty of leads and solos peppered around. There are some good quality riffs on this release and the rhythm guitars in general have a nice blackened twang to them that hits the spot. They spend their time between producing traditionally blackened noises and the more melodic, colourful side of their nature. Both work very well and are not mutually exclusive.
The songwriting is very good, with the compositions having a decent amount of variety. They move through blasting intensity, fast semi-thrashings, mid-paced groove and slower atmospheric sections. All the while the melodic aspect to their sound is never far away from the action. This is always tempered by the bite of the frosted black metal components though, so the rampant colour and exuberance never gets out of hand. This is black metal, after all.
The Plight of Wanderers is a very enjoyable release. It’s 42 minutes of extremely likeable metal, played with personality and passion. An impressive and enjoyable début.