I’ve had a bit of a soft spot for Sol Sistere ever since spending time with 2019’s Extinguished Cold Light. As such, as soon as the band’s new self-titled album surfaced, I knew I had to experience what it had to offer.
Across 61 minutes Sol Sistere deliver second wave-influenced blackened aggression, with an emphasis on atmosphere and the occasional excursion into post-rock waters. Of the latter influence, there’s a lightness here that belies the music’s core ferocity, and sometimes replaces it altogether with hazy, ambient beauty. Ashes boasts some great examples of this, but they’re not the only ones spread out across Sol Sistere.
With a surprisingly warm and organic production, Sol Sistere’s music sounds more vibrant and alive than ever. Sol Sistere are well aware of how to make the most of their skills, and these new tracks demonstrate that ably.
The songs use resplendent blackened melodies alongside an aggressive base to propel the music forward. Tasteful synths and melodies wash over the listener with sometimes delicate grace, as rolling drums and harsh screams power onward. The band’s immersive songs draw you in to their tumultuous waters. Carried along by waves of blackened distortion and lost in a sea of atmospheric aggression, the listener happily drowns in a maelstrom of mood and melody. This is music that’s easy to get swept away by.
This sort of solid interpretation of atmospheric blackened aggression is never going to be a waste of your time. Although lengthy, the band know their style well, and attack the material with passion and no small amount of graceful skill.
A highly recommended listen for any fan of atmospheric black metal.