So after their recent Xasthur release, drone label Hyrda Head takes another leap into the black metal elite with the second album from Sweden’s one man, avant-garde black metal act Bergraven.

I still think, to this day that Fleurety’s Mid Tid Skall Komme is one of the more under-rated black metal albums that surfaced during the genre’s explosion in the early/mid 90s, and it’s that album (along with a bit of Shining’s more post rock based stuff) that Dödsvisioner conjures up. Rather than the typical depressive, suicidal strains of most one man black metal, Dödsvisioner is a doomy, progressive, artistic, cerebral and frankly, weirder take on the usual one man black metal tones. Sure, it’s got lengthy songs full of lull of adventurous, atmospherics along with pained rasps and whispers, but on the whole, you’re never quite on the edge of suicidal madness but more rather taken to a dreamier, drug induced hallucination.

Also, Dödsvisioner never really feels ‘grim’, with its superb guitar tone and crystal clear rhythm section; the many acoustic segments are never really harrowing, but far more ebbing, expansive, introspective and nervous as heard on the likes of “Det Man Med Själen…”, “Den Svarta Angstens Essens” and interlude “Av Saknad Släcker Jag Ljuset”. Even when Bergraven explode into more aggressive realms like haunting opener “Döende”, “Ondkall” and “Ekot Av Bikt”, it’s rarely a blast laden affair, but more a steady and precise, at times, doomy (“Döende (En Avslutning”) Satyricon or Shining based groove, especially “Känsla Av Livets Nästa Skede”. Even then, those moments are laced with lots of acoustic and progressive injections that keep the tracks on the other side of mental stability.

Dödsvisioner is a damn fine album, and album that artfully crosses the realms of the more typical one man black metal acts and adds some of the flair, unstability and the sheer creative audacity of some of the genre’s more progressive pioneers.

[Visit the band's website]
Written by Erik T
May 18th, 2007


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