From The Vastland – “Temple Of Daevas” (Non Serviam Records)
An Iranian / Norwegian collaboration beginning as a one man project fronted by the multi talented musician Sina, From The Vastland is now onto its 3rd album and reflects the aspirations of its founder in being the amalgamation of ancient empires and today’s metal world, a world without boundaries. That said, musically there is nothing apart from the intro and the odd melody that would indicate any influence from Persia, although it’s certainly in the lyrics of songs like ‘Wrath Of Aeshma‘, ‘Djahi, The Vicious Wizard’ and ‘Kamak’ with many eastern myths and folklore finding a rich base in the Old School Norwegian Black Metal that Sina plays – ableit with more melancholy rather than evil exuding from his veins! Enjoying support from various luminaries in the Norwegian scene, From The Vastland played their live debut at last year’s Inferno Festival, and on this album he is joined by drummer Vegar “Vyl” Larsen (Keep of Kalessin / Gorgoroth-live) and Andre “Tjalve” Kvebek (1349 / Pantheon I / Den Saakaldte) on bass. With Sina composing and laying down all the vocal and guitar tracks, he is clearly very proud of his work, featuring both prominently in the mix and especially his driving guitar work which has a clean sound that doesn’t hide in the monotone smog of traditionalists, and incorporates plenty of dark, metallic clanging melodies. Vocally, it’s drawls and rasps but nothing over the top as epic is the theme of From The Vastland, rather than evil, in evoking a dark and stormy atmosphere vividly reflected in the album cover. With longer than average songs by far compared to the genre, as well as being rich textured along with its eastern mysticism the saga continues gloriously with From The Vastland…..