Watain - Wild Hunt 2LP
Taking things to the next step - whatever the costs are. This has always been Watain's goal from day one and this has never been truer than with The Wild Hunt, their fifth full-length album and first for Century Media Records. It would be easy to call this the most important album of their career but then again, all their albums are. With mixing duties handled by the faithful Tore Stjerna at the famous Necromorbus studio in Alvik (Sweden), The Wild Huntmarks another gigantic achievement and most importantly once again ups the ante compared to Watain's extremely well received previous releases. By far, it is their most diverse record to date and vocalist E. is adamant about "each album bringing a story on it's own. There's never been a question of continuing wherever we ended with the previous one." So if to some the opening instrumental "Night Vision" picks up nicely where "Waters of Ain" left off on "Lawless Darkness" and the album's first single "All That May Bleed" has classic Watain written all over the place, these eleven songs offer plenty of devilish surprises. The trio (rounded up by P. on strings and H. on drums) has never ever compromised their sound nor their vision to "mainstream black metal" and The Wild Hunt is another vivid proof of that. This sonic and lyrical tour-de-force explores the band's classic roots like Bathory or Dissection ("being quite a retrospective record, that record is permeated by things that meant a lot to us in the past so no reason to try to hide them") while also being truly their own.