Prognan is a two-man band with hefty war themed melodic black metal hailing from beautiful Croatia. The name Prognan bears the meaning exiled, abandoned, or banished in most Slavic languages. The black metal act was formed in the north-eastern city Vukovar in 2008. Previously the band has released one demo, two EP’s and one full length album earlier in 2023.
Sve Je Tiho Na Istočnom Frontu
Sve Je Tiho Na Istočnom Frontu is a fantastic compilation, consisting of eight captivating songs sourced from various locations. The compilation includes tracks from the demo Follow the Blind, the EP Jama, and two songs that was scrapped from their original full-length album due to its length. Five of the albums’ tracks have never been released before and are only found on this majestic release.
This album is highly captivating and immerses the listener into Prognan’s brutal iron grip. The hour-long album passes at great pace. Prognan are masters of sending the listener on a musical journey through the Croatian war-torn land of the first world war.
Sve Je Tiho Istočnom Frontu is an exceptional piece of art. Kob’s vocals reminds me a lot of MGLA’s Mikołaj Żentara also known as “M.”s vocal style. The vocals are more leaning into the death metal sound but also bear tones of those typical found in folk metal. There are moments while listening to the album where I can’t help but think of the YouTube channel BEK that showcase a lot of eastern European folk music. The way the lyrics are delivered is what makes this resemblance so strong. I can also mention bands like SatanaKozel, Arkona and Hautajaisyö for similarity in vocal sound.
- Utjeha kose
- Kolašinska brigada
- Vapaj pokojnika
- 1300 kaplara
- Nekoć braća
- All is Quiet on the Eastern Front
- Jama (Bonus Track)
Prognan have powerful experimental elements in their music. Multiple of the tracks have sections with choirs filling the background sound, emotional melodic pianos, brass sections, guitar solos, and a filmic soundtrack approach to the songs. The lyrics are all in Croatian except for the seventh track “All is Quiet on the Eastern Front” and that amplifies the folky vibe.
Mixing of the album is faultless. The album has a great heavy sound, the guitars are distorted as expected, and the drums are perfect. The melodic and catchy riffs combined with the storytelling vocals and choirs make this piece memorable.
Throughout listening I pick up multiple references from other musicians. Pieces of the melody from “The Rains of Castamere” from the TV series Game of Thrones are present on “Kolašinska brigada”. On “All is Quiet on the Eastern Front” there is a bit sped up riff from Fleshgod Apocalypse’s Sugar “Push! Push! Push!” chorus.
Its extremely hard picking a single track for this section! So, I will recommend two.
Kolašinska brigade is the third and longest track on the album. This is a beautiful written song. Both brutal, melancholic, and empowering. This track has everything Prognan can throw at the listeners. A melodic opening transitioning into delicious heavy hitting metal. Brass instruments create a wonderful background to Kobs harsh vocals, and the piano is mournful. This is also the piece with great hints of “The rains of Castamere” melody.
1300 Kaplara is the fifth track and opens like a movie soundtrack. It presents an empowering tone while the rest of the music thunders underneath it, just like a heroic act in a terrible war. This track bears the most folk music influence on the album and gives a good Balkan feel.
In conclusion, this album leaves a great mark on the listener by honouring and shedding light on the terrifying stories of the brave men and women who endured these wars.
Sve Je Tiho Na Istočnom Frontu is certainly one of my favourite releases this year. I highly recommend this album for enjoyers of war themed metal and for fans of bands like 1914, MGLA, SatanaKozel and Arkona.
I am excited to see what more Prognan has in store and can only hope to experience their theatrical sound live in the near future!
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