Funeral Winds
333

Being in a league with bands like 1349, Tsjuder, Horna and Nargoroth must be a great feeling (or maybe not, they might hate each other) but either way making metal this black is what Funeral Winds have been consistent with throughout their career. Since 1992 the band has been the constant work of Hellchrist Xul and 333 shows that he has no intention of slowing down, especially after the beast that was Stigmata Mali last year.

333 is the eighth studio album from Funeral Winds and right out of the starting gate “Sovereign of Shadows” comes ripping in with a drum roll, blasting all the way, but then it slows, not to a crawl, but to a mid-paced throat grabber with menacing ice cold riffing lowering the temperature considerably and this doesn’t let up with second track “Eternal Nightmare” where it slips into a twisting and turning riff at the 2:30 mark before the whirlwind whips up again that serpentine riff comes back at 4:30 and continues as a marching Black Metal reaper across your eardrums.

“Cast the Gauntlet of Doom” comes in as a slow burner before a quick flurry of blasting and it goes back to the slow burning fire over a nasty riff. Is this a better album than Stigmata Mali? Not particularly, granted the songs are still just as strong but it doesn’t do much to better that album. Which doesn’t mean that 333 is a bad or boring or any other negative words album; on the contrary it’s a strong Black Metal album… just not as good as, and you can take that as you will. Tracks like “Ancient Wrath Unleashed” which is one of my favorite songs and it’s followed by another Black Metal killer with “The Damned Ones Shall Rise” spitting venomous bile and sporting some sick time changes to boot.

“Forever Cursed and Bound” oozes black blood as it travels it’s dark path. Closing tracks “Birthed by Pure Malevolence” and “Conjuration of the Blind One” which is a fucking doozy of a closing track, clocking in at 7:11 minutes. solidify that 333 will appear on my 2024 list already.

So, at the end of the day, or review as it were, I enjoyed 333 enough to recommend it. Let the pitch blackness wash over you, bask in Funeral Winds Black Metal greatness, I can assure you that you won’t be disappointed.

[Visit the band's website]
Written by Jeremy Beck
January 26th, 2024

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