|Classic Review: Vinterland - Welcome My Last Chapter|
|Welcome My Last Chapter|
Label: No Fashion Records
Year released: 1996
Genre: Black Metal
Review online: September 23, 2007
Reviewed by: Lars Christiansen
for:Welcome My Last Chapter
Rated 4.2/5 (84%) (30 Votes)
Here's another one of those bands that released a single album of fantastic material, only to disappear into obscurity. Whether this was through bad management, poor decision making or sheer bad luck, the reason for their disappearance certainly wasn't down to their music being shitty. 'Welcome My Last Chapter' in my opinion at least, could easily stand toe to toe with Dissection or Sacramentum's best works, and come out of 12 rounds only to lose on a split decision. I had mixed feelings when I heard that they'd reformed recently to make new material, as it's just as possible that they could piss all over their legacy with a duff release as it was that they could release another classic. Today however, I'm concentrating on their only full length - and what a fantastic album it is.
The aforementioned Dissection and Sacramentum do share large similarities with Vinterland, by way of storming tremolo picked guitar melodies played at high speeds, topped with machine gun drumming and rasping vocals. There are also melancholic acoustic interludes, and a sparing usage of choral synthesizers and piano (played by Dan Swano) to add that extra bit of atmosphere for the slower sections, but it's the pairing of the fast and mid-paced work that really works the magic best on this release. The guitar melodies are of the highest quality, managing to be simultaneously beautiful and visceral in keeping with their lyrical topics (which range from the splendor of nature, to its bleak harshness). Unlike a lot of the watered down modern melodic black metal, this album begs to be listened to that one more time for its sheer inventiveness and magnitude, even eleven years after its original release it still sounds fresh and invigorating - no mean feat for any melodic black metal album.
This album is generally considered a classic by all those who've been touched by its sheer presence. So, if you're one of the unfortunates who have yet to discover this band first time around, you should really hunt this album down (it was out of print for a while, but is due for re-issue shortly). Seek and enjoy.
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