Brought to us by a member of Afgrund and Besvärjelsen, Råtijinn contains 48 minutes of frosted black metal ferocity. Hilning’s music merges the old-school cold and dark approach with epic folk-tinged melodies.
The combination of grim aggression and grandiose melody makes for an engaging listen. Råtijinn is an album that takes strengths from not only the traditional style, but from pagan black metal too. The music takes inspiration from the classic Scandinavian scene and augments it with folk influences to produce songs that fall somewhere between Darkthrone and Kampfar. There’s also a crust punk influence at play too, which works well.
The music creates atmosphere with ease, wrapping the listener in frozen winds as they trudge through a snowy landscape marvelling at the bright lights in the sky. Synths are occasionally used to enhance this further, but they are used relatively sparingly, (although quite effectively).
The songs are well-crafted and although all parts of the music are performed well, I especially like the rhythm guitars and some of the riffs and melodic highlights that are used. The artist behind Hilning clearly knows the style well, and these tracks hit the spot with blackened precision.
I like how the album sounds; it makes for a very satisfying experience, and everything has good presence and impact across the board. The vocals deliver a range of screams, shrieks, growls, and howls. The singer’s voice is sometimes restrained, sometimes unhinged, but always well-performed.
Råtijinn is a solid and enjoyable slice of underground black metal.