(0) – “SkamHan” (Napalm Records)
Battle Helm Rating
Following the release of their self titled debut in 2017, (0), which apparently is pronounced ‘parentes0parentes’, return with more dark melancholia on “SkamHan”. Boldly mixing black metal elements like harsh vocals with post metal riffs into a slower and darker experimental form that on many occasions has an intended hypnotic effect through prominent droning guitar melodies, this Danish quintet delve less into Satan’s bowels, instead preferring the depth of the human psyche. While at times depressive, the 7 captivating tracks are, true to human nature, not without aggression and when it arrives like on ‘Skarntyder’ (which translates as someone who points out a person that misbehaves or doesn’t fit in), it is expectedly enraged through its whirring riffs that just slice through you, primordial roars that stab your soul and massive drums that just make you shudder, while the painful emotions are beautifully drawn out through somber guitar melodies. Through its gloomy ambiance, ‘Rød Glorie’, at almost 10 minutes has plenty of time for its atmospheric expanse to be felt through a myriad of blast beating passages, melancholic serenity, post metal noise and heavier epic pieces, all of which are superbly knitted together through captivating throat raw drawls that remain constant through the entirety of this intense song – truly impressive. With a foreboding and stifling darkness, the oppressive whirring riffs on ‘Sortfugl’ drill straight into your mind, while the dry drawls occasionally lending to screams are nothing short of primordial as are the post metal melodies and strummed bass which all come together amazingly to produce a most wondrously uplifting effect – it’s like attending the funeral of a loved one and at the end feeling the grief finally lifting off your shoulders – brilliant. Through excellent musicianship, captivating compositions and especially superb arrangements, “SkamHan” conveys its emotions to perfection. It is indeed different, as intended to be.