OFERMOD - Sol Nox LP
In days where bands seeking to distinguish themselves are spinning off into ever more exotic realms both thematically and musically, wielding ever more discordant and noisy progressions like weapons of mass destruction and substituting the classic satanic paeans with blood-soaked exhortations to Kali Ma, the real “orthodoxy” of a band like Ofermod in the literal sense becomes ever more apparent. Sol Nox’s formula rests almost entirely upon a core of eerie, De Mysteriis-era Mayhem-esque melodies milked around the hierophantic howls of whatever madman is currently delivering orations for Ofermod’s fane (Johannes Kvarnbrink from Mortuus fame, in this case). Gone completely are the experiments with ritual instrumentation and more convoluted, death metal riffs and structures that had characterized their previous two full-lengths, unflinchingly returning to the bare bones sonic trappings that had initially laid out the band’s infamy on Mysterion Tes Anomias. Sol Nox shows that an experienced band can still be capable of fully leveraging the strengths of a sound to create a work that feels at once familiar and awe-inspiring. While one would be hard-pressed to say that it reaches the intensity of Ofermod’s earliest days, and younger bands may outdo them in creativity and raw enthusiasm, Sol Nox nevertheless is a telling demonstration that this old black wyrm still has more than a few things to teach its brood.
Gold vinyl LP, including a 16 page booklet, limited to 500 copies. Shadow Records 2017