Satyricon & Munch

Let me just say straight away that this is not a metal album.

Its hard to describe what it is, exactly. Argh! Ok, its fair to say I have never done any sort of Classical music review… ever. While this is a Satyricon album, and their name is on the tin. This is part of a larger project; a celebration of Norwegian artist Edvard Munch, best known for his painting “The Scream”.

So, does anyone remember the Wongraven album Fjelltronen? Dungeon Synth, heavy on atmosphere? Maybe you’ve heard of Mortiis? Fenriz’s Storm and Isengard projects? Maybe I’m throwing out ambient Black Metal albums, grasping to categorize what Satyricon & Munch is within the realm of the Black Metal spirit.

On blackened chords it comes from the speakers, a single track, fifty-nine minutes long ebbing and flowing like a stygian river, boiling through the bowels of the earth. Guitars are present, and according to the press release, Satyr used a multitude of instruments to create the beautiful miasma.

The first half of the record is classical based, but not bouncy and jaunty, its Wagner tones that bring the darkness and it isn’t till the halfway mark that Frost shows up on a drum kit that the song takes on a frozen, desolate feeling. The journey down this river of black lava is almost over; it’s been a strange trip through the mind of Edvard Munch and Satyricon.

I recommend this, it’s a different kind of mood and atmosphere, unsettling at times. Boundaries of what Black Metal is are flattened and scattered across the soundscape universe. Satyricon has undertaken a huge project, a celebration of the man and his work, while also adding a diverse and stunning Black Classical (new genre, just made it up) album to an already classic discography.

[Visit the band's website]
Written by Jeremy Beck
August 10th, 2022


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