Ulver‘s made some great ambient and electronic albums since their big genre switch, but don’t you wish they’d also turned out another Bergtatt or Kveldssanger before leaving metal behind for good? (Or at least took a bass with them when they recorded Nattens Madrigal in that forest?) Well, now you can take a hike into those same misty, troll-infested hills with this debut release from Norway’s Nàttsòl.

All of the elements that made both Bergtatt and Kveldssanger so timeless and entrancing are expertly woven into Stemning. Twisty, folky, galloping and frantic black metal riffs. Meditative clean-chanted harmonies. Scraping, guttural troll-rasps and berserker screams and roars. Rumbling drums, like distant, fjord-echoed peals of thunder. And delicate acoustic interludes that flow by like crystal brooks in secret, sun-dappled glades.

There’s no need to detail Stemning track by track, as the album is a note-perfect example of authentic, mystical, nature-focused black metal from start to end. This was truly a pleasant and enthralling surprise from an unknown act, but given their labelmates Alcest, Tenhi, Negura Bunget (and their forthcoming splinter-act Dordeduh), I can’t say the quality here is entirely unexpected. Go and get lost in the woods with this one.

Highly, highly recommended.

[Visit the band's website]
Written by Jordan Itkowitz
June 7th, 2010


  1. Commented by: Infinite Death (Nick)

    Damn, this is awesome stuff. You’re spot on with the Ulver comparison, Jordan. Thanks for writing this review! One more phenomenal band in my library.

  2. Commented by: gabaghoul

    Yeah the album immediately screamed Bergtatt when I put it on the first time; no surprise that when I went back to check the PR materials, they reference it as well

  3. Commented by: Infinite Death (Nick)

    You should review October Falls – A Collapse of Faith, too.

  4. Commented by: gabaghoul

    cool I didn’t know they had a new one, I reviewed The Womb of Primordial Nature, great album. thanks for the heads up.

  5. Commented by: Infinite Death (Nick)

    No problem Jordan!

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