Svarti Loghin
Drifting Through the Void

After reading the review of Svarti Loghin’s debut, Empty World by our very own Jordan Itkowitz, I avoided this Swedish group after seeing words like “happy black metal” and “country black metal” used. However, as in my old age I come to appreciate acts like Nuen Welten, Tenhi, Alcest and Amesoeurs I decided to check out the second album from Svarti Loghin.

What an odd beast this is.

Alcest’s first album immediately comes to mind with a warm and delicate take on black metal that’s amicable yet still despondent. If Alcest is ‘green metal’, then Svarti Loghin is ‘brown metal’ – an autumnal and woodsy take on black metal that does not bare its teeth and snarl, but rather hikes, sits around the campfire, makes home grown wines with berries and eat trail mix. Even with the presence of come blackened shrieks, they are relatively muted and ‘distant’ either by virtue of the strangely murky production or by design, and hardly going to get your blood to boil.

The whole mood of Drifting Through the Void is one of well… drifting and wandering. The whole album seems distant and disconnected like talking to a hippy. There’s someone there and they are full of knowledge buts its so bogged down in deep inner thoughts and bong fueled memory loss ― all relevance is virtually lost. The thing is the material treads such a fine line between despondent and artfully shimmering, without a commitment to either, leaving a rather amorphous blob of acoustics, shrieks, baritone croons and mid paced plodding that neither fan bases (black metal/neo-folk) will be appeased.

That being said, there is a certain elegance and allure to Svarti Loghin’s dreamy, tempered hues and relaxing atmospheres. Notably the first tracks like “Kosmik Tomhet” and “Odelagd Framtid”. But where Empty World had its Country metal “WTF?” moment in its title track, Drifting Through the Void’s title track delivers an equally head scratching moment with a first half that could literally be a Soundgarden or Soul Asylum ballad. I’ll let that sink in…

However, the more enjoyable wet leaves scent of Svarti Loghin continues for “Bury My Heart in these Starlit Waters” which is a rather beautiful 9 minutes, but doesn’t make any real headway from the first few tracks and frankly I think Svarti Loghin could be better served as an instrumental act, as the rarely used vocals are the main cause of the band’s awkward dichotomy (closer “Stargazer”).

I’m not even touching the cover of Black Sabbath’s “Planet Caravan”…

[Visit the band's website]
Written by E. Thomas
April 12th, 2010

Comments

  1. Commented by: gabaghoul

    LOL “black metal that does not bare its teeth and snarl, but rather hikes, sits around the campfire, makes home grown wines with berries and eats trail mix”


  2. Commented by: gabaghoul

    and more LOL: “The whole album seems distant and disconnected like talking to a hippy”.


  3. Commented by: gordeth

    Great review. I think you described their style perfectly. But I won’t be buying this album. It’s too mellow and disjointed for my taste.


  4. Commented by: Shawn Pelata

    I’m actually interested…


  5. Commented by: Cynicgods

    Hahahaha the hippy description was priceless. Excellent review. Made me want to stop my Peter Steele tribute for a bit and check this out.


  6. Commented by: Cynicgods

    Well, it’s actually hippie, but I’m not gonna point it out since I’m not that anal about spelling. ;)


  7. Commented by: gabaghoul

    “But where Empty World had its Country metal “WTF?” moment in its title track, Drifting Through the Void’s title track delivers an equally head scratching moment with a first half that could literally be a Soundgarden or Soul Asylum ballad. I’ll let that sink in…”

    I’m listening to this right now and your description is making me ROFL. Seriously, what the hell is this? It’s good for what it is, but man this is as far from black metal – despondent or otherwise – as I think a black metal release has ever gotten.


  8. Commented by: gabaghoul

    omg now there’s a harmonica


  9. Commented by: An Autumn for Crippled Children – Lost « Teeth of the Divine

    […] to find some grim and frostbitten black metal. Inside, she found three CDs: Svarti Loghin’s Drifting Into the Void, Nyseius’ Militae and An Autumn For Crippled Children’s […]


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