Lorn – Arrayed Claws (Review)

LornLorn are an Italian black metal band and this is their latest EP.

Apparently this is an EP, but at 40 minutes in length it’s longer than some albums.

The artwork firmly caught my eye when this appeared; as soon as I saw the cover I knew I had to listen to it. I’m glad I did.

Lorn play atmospheric black metal. Their style is influenced by the second wave, which they frequently take off from into more cosmic and atmospheric realms.

The songs are aggressive and energetic, but not without atmosphere or nuance. The band use different speeds across the tracks, never staying in one for too long.

Psychedelic and dark ambient elements can be heard, the former quite enjoyable. The latter are serene and calming, an appropriate juxtaposition against the more jarringly apocalyptic sounds of the actual black metal, and in contrast to some other bands that use ambient influences, here they’re incorporated into the actual black metal a lot more than is the norm. Aus Nebel Turm in particular is a real highlight of this side of the band’s material.

As for the more blackened aspects of the songs – dissonant melodies and unusual riffs pepper the release like fine seasoning. The guitars have a very good sound; they’re relatively heavy and substantial, yet still carry that essential blackened timbre to them that’s a frosted mark of a lot of black metal work.

Lorn’s atypical take on the second wave is great to hear, especially when they branch out into the more atmospheric realms. I like how the tracks are constructed, taking the listener on a journey and treating them to unexpected sights and sounds.

As is always my preference for this kind of music, the vocals are low in the mix and high pitched, sounding like something otherworldly scratching at the sides of reality.

Yes, Arrayed Claws is a very fine release indeed.

Highly recommended for blackened explorers of the underworld.

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