Mavradoxa – Lethean Lament (Review)

MavradoxaMavradoxa are a black metal band from the US and this is their second album.

Lethean Lament features over an hour of atmospheric black metal, played with passionate commitment and emotive grandeur.

Majestic, epic, atmospheric, melancholic…these and many other adjectives are all relevant when describing what Mavradoxa have created here, but all of them fall short until you actually listen to their music and get swept away in its rich, textured delivery.

Introspective reflection walks hand in hand with raw aggression and atmospheric splendour. Lethean Lament is an ambitious body of work that succeeds due to the obvious love for the music that the band have; this is not music that’s clinical and pumped out for the sake of it, not at all. The music on this album clearly has had a lot of love, passion, and time poured into it, and this comes across strongly in the strength and feeling of the songs.

Feeling is a very good word to equate with Mavradoxa, in fact. Everything here is positively bleeding with one form of emotion or another, but never in any badly-judged or cringeworthy way. The music here is mature, considered, and emotionally competent.

Inspired by the natural environment, Lethean Lament transports the listener on an evocative journey, across cold and exotic landscapes, where danger is only one wrongly-placed step away. Despite the harshness of the natural world, there’s also an undeniable beauty to it, and this is where Mavradoxa come from; harshness and beauty, wrapped up in sumptuous moods and atmospheric radiance.

As you can probably tell, this album has really impressed me. The music here connects to something primal and lesser-seen in music. It transports back to the early days of black metal’s exploration, while still managing to sound both contemporary and essentially timeless. Lethean Lament is a huge achievement, and I can’t recommend it highly enough.

Fans of atmospheric black metal should be excited by this, very excited indeed.

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