You gotta be brave to break into a metal genre that many have tried and few succeeded in. We are talking about the realm of blackened orgiastic atmospherics and the horrible plastic drum machine.
You guessed it.
Ashlands – from central Umbria in Italy – now started this journey into those fantastic lands of yonder wonders. The band plans to release a series of three EPs, all wrapped around a distinct storyline. With Ashlands I going first at the end of September 2019.
They do err on the traditional’ side of things, that’s for sure. Yet again and whilst the style does resemble the oldies in the genre, they add just the right amount of spice to keep things interesting.
First, the doomy Melodic Death Metal growls à la My Silent Wake led to a lot of head-scratching over here. Then, there’s this artful inclusion of wind instruments – flutes for instance – more reminiscent of Atmospheric Black Metal outfits like Sojourner.
The icing on this specific blackened cake definitely is this distinct progressive flavor of some parts, clear voice included. I really appreciated the effort of these guys to differentiate themselves, and – to an extent – to invent new undercurrents.
We quite enjoyed the tunes Ashlands sent to us. Their short blurb really marries the old, known somewhat over-synthesized ‘savoir-faire’ with ideas of their own. And this made us listen to their record a few times more than we should have, and enjoy it too.
So, if you are into abject atmospherics of the fantasy kind, then you should definitely give Ashlands a try.
It will be worth your while.
The Wanderer – guitars, bass, keys, clean vocals, lyrics, programming
The Vanguard – harsh vocals, lyrics
Label: Self-Released | Web: Facebook
Release date: 30 September 2019