Nine Covens
On the Dawning of Light

First off, I am most honored to be writing for Teeth of the Divine. Instead of routinely misspelling the URL (long domain names are a problem spot for me), I can now have it saved to my favorites and see my work alongside some rather top-notch writers. Prior to this, I was editor for, a site that also reveled in white design schematics. Black is so passé, you know? Regardless, I am eager to get down to work, and hopefully no one will catch on that Katatonia is my favorite band and the Cleveland Browns have contributed to the dearth of hair on my head. Oops – too late for that. Onward we go!

Ping the word “anonymous” in black metal, and instantly one is thrust into the world one-man, efficiency apartment and/or basement recordings. It takes a lot to convince people that’s there’s some diabolical fiend behind the Tascam 4-track, which lends to the gradual truncating of solo-run BM. Nine Covens, though, make anonymous black metal slightly more appealing, having undergone some sort of transformation from their underwhelming …On the Coming of Darkness debut to their sophomore On the Dawning of Light. Improvement is here in spades.

The direct sonic line goes to Watain, who have entrenched themselves with what is perhaps, the most potent arsenal of vitriol (and animal blood) in black metal. Visuals aside, Nine Covens paints more of a gauntlet-themed picture than dense forests, as the brazen attack of opener “Origin of Light” gets down with potent blasting and the circle punking that Darkthrone tends to lunge for. Similarly, “As Fire Consumes” hits paydirt with threads of melody placed over top – you guessed it – more blasting. It’s a sure-fire album highlight, and the most Watain-ready song of the lot.

As it turns out, the album’s melodic strands are the foundational characteristics that catapult On the Dawning of Light over its predecessor. Numbers like “As the Ocean’s Strand,” “The Mist of Death” and the instrumental “White Star Acception” all take on memorable guitar lines without a problem; “White Star Acception” emerging as the type of song that only veteran (and brave) black metal bands would attempt.

More coherence and onus on melodies have served Nine Covens well. While their perpetually cloaked-in-darkness presentation may elicit yaws from the crowd who pines for more cow blood, On the Dawning of Light should help Nine Covens escape the black metal doldrums and enter the conversation of at least, second-tier bands.

[Visit the band's website]
Written by David E Gehlke
January 21st, 2013


  1. Commented by: gordeth

    Welcome to Teeth! There’s nothing wrong with Katatonia being your favorite band as long as you favor the correct albums. ;)

  2. Commented by: Cal

    Welcome aboard, as a fellow Browns fan I am surprised you haven’t been reduced to listening to funeral doom constantly.

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