St. Paul, Minnesot'as True Metal Record Store (RIP as of Dec. 24, 2015)
To honor Minnesota’s hiems aeternam (thanks Google translate), becoming reacquainted with Austria’s SUMMONING seems an apt indoor activity for the evening.
A few choice experiences have forever married this band to miserable sloppy weather in my mind and the direct connection, such as a sluggish drive through near whiteout conditions, is merely one part of that. The rest should be obvious from a quick listen. It’s tough to sit through Minas Morgul, see the cover art, and not have images of some kind of trollish convoy traversing frozen hardships before finally arriving at Into the Void Records. Behold:
The takeaway here is that there’s a latent joy in their struggles, which…honestly, that must apply to our weather predicament but I don’t care how.
Cream of the crop for these guys for me is Nightshade Forests; cut from the same cloth as Dol Guldur (i.e. full-length #3) and recorded as part of that session. As a 40-minute “EP” it truly summarizes them at their stylistic peak. Perhaps a good soundtrack to morel hunting or playing stickball with bullheads if we ever thaw out.
The stuff after NF tends to hem and haw. Stronghold is more melodic, guitar-centric and probably most approachable from a “metal” standpoint, but the Eurotrash beats are turned up to the nines and can get distracting. Lost Tales is a (very) mini-LP with no vocals or guitars to speak of — an odd anomaly. The last two after that begin to climb back to their hypnotic, epic, keyboard-soaked roots.
Nothing much doing for several years, which can only mean that Silenus and Protector have been binge-smoking cloves in Viennese EBM haunts to pass the time (naturally).
[Update: Hark! I guess there’s news after all. Thank you Internet.]
Not being a Lord of the Rings apologist or even casual fan I have no idea how well these albums work as an accompaniment to all that, but does it even matter?
Oh, and Into the Void will have these all in stock quite cheaply relatively soon.
Oh, and shameless plugs will abound.
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