This is the fifth album from Finland’s black metallers Oranssi Pazuzu.
This is the follow up to 2016’s well-received Värähtelijä, which is a record that has only increased in my estimation over time. Now, across 50 minutes of multifaceted and highly textured music, Mestarin Kynsi is an album that I have little doubt in my mind will keep on giving for years to come as well.
If you haven’t met them before, Oranssi Pazuzu are not your ordinary band. Although black metal is loosely the most suitable top-level descriptor of the music they make, it’s also quite misleading, as Mestarin Kynsi doesn’t share a whole lot in common with most of the blackened hordes out there. No, this is a distinctly individual creation, with progressive, avant-garde, experimental, electronic, and psychedelic embellishments that raise it far above the generic output of the majority of the band’s ostensible peers.
This level of quality in such unconventional music is only possible due to the formidable talents that the band possess, and their ability to focus these talents into music that feels like a substantial journey. Each piece is a rich soundscape of nuance and intricacy, providing the listener with layers upon layers of meaning and depth to explore and get lost in.
The tracks on this new opus are creative and well-developed, drawing the listener into Oranssi Pazuzu’s world with ease. Highly atmospheric and immersive, it’s easy to become hypnotised by these songs. Building atmosphere and feeling, and worldbuilding with their excellent grasp of structuring and mood, each of these songs is thoroughly involving, to the point where Mestarin Kynsi quickly establishes itself in your brain and won’t get out.
A work to explore over time. Highly recommended.
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