Emptiness Fills the Void

I was drawn to the 4th album from Switzerland’s Stortregn (Swedish for ‘downpour’) by the as always killer Dan Seagrave artwork alone as I had never heard of this band or any of their albums. But as what happens a few times on blindly checking out a promo, I ended up really liking this band and album a lot.

Playing a form of very melodic, black/death metal that has  a very 90s,  Scandinavian influence  (Dissection, Dawn, Unanimated, Vinterland, Sacramentum, Naglfar, Catamenia) but also some more modern, polished  sometimes technical, shredding influence such as Inferi .  No keys or synths, just riffs and leads. The heart of the sound is driven by lead guitarist Johan Smith who absolutely shreds here and adds some simply killer melodic licks. Check out the little flourishes in standout opener “Through the Dark Gates” or the opening chops and leads of “Lawless”. That’s good stuff right there.

But it’s not just those 2 songs, each of the 9 songs delivers confident, well written and polished affairs that make for a very enjoyable album from start to its 11 minute finish in “Children of the Obsidian Light”, where Smith just goes bonkers with solos. Only than some acoustic spurts in a few of the tracks  , a short acoustic interlude ‘The Chasm of Eternity” and some acoustic expanded moments on the ambitious, aforementioned closer take the foot of the shreddage pedal.

Tracks like “The Forge” , “The Eclipsist” and thrashy, intense “Shattered Universe” are just good, solid, well composed and played songs that show how to highlight a player’s skill as part of a whole,  well oiled band.  The Conatus Studio production by Vladimir Cochet (Mirrorthrone, Conjunctive , Dysrider) – a producer who I have enjoyed everything I have heard from him, is tight and clean with a modern edge, completing the overall, compact very enjoyable package and an album I will revisited numerous times beyond reviewing purposes.

[Visit the band's website]
Written by Erik T
May 30th, 2018


  1. Commented by: Jay

    Solid stuff and great review. I got this on my desktop. Spot-on with the Scandinavian classic feel. I played this same day as I did “Storm of the Light’s Bane” again and it fits with the theme of day!

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