IKU-TURSO “Ikuinen Kirous”
Origin: Oulu, Pohjois-Pohjanmaa, Finland 🇫🇮 • Netherlands 🇳🇱
Formed in: 2017
Genre: Black Metal
Label: Purity Through Fire
Release date: 27th of October 2023
As of late, Finland’s IKU-TURSO: named after a sea monster in Finnish mythology, have quietly, under the prestigious Purity Through Fire banner, been toiling the darkest abyss that is otherwise known as the European black metal underground. And what they’ve surfaced from underneath is black metal, not akin to the traditional Finnish variety. Powerful and dense as steel; old Suomi and Dutch steel that lacerates through the typicality of the current scene, but always true to black metal’s roots. A throwback? Somewhat…
There’s a sleazy black & roll element to IKU-TURSO’s forthcoming album, “Ikuinen Kirous” that surfaces from behind an otherwise gothic backdrop: greasy riffs and rotten gutturals to be expected as you take in tracks like the opener, “Nikotimsefuopua” with its Cradle of Filth-heralding vibes and “Een Zucht Van Verdriet” in all of its early-90’worshiping glory. Ethereal tremolo’s cast Shades of Emperor’s “In the Nightside Eclipse” over a martial percussive foundation; just enough atmosphere and the just right level of experimentation to each album cut, to dazzle the contemporary BM enthusiast, all the while as the stubborn curmudgeon is appeased.
With no real stylistic ties to any particular school of BM besides what can simply be referred to as European or International. IKU-TURSO are very much an entity of their own, and they prove it with dramatic shifts in tempo and an array of unique progressions throughout. A thrashing during some parts and some triumphant heavy metal influence during others. An entire scene-spanning offering that pushes the limits of what’s considered true black metal, but reined in by traditional recording and production techniques.
Call it true black metal, call it gothic, call it Vampyric; it all applies here within the frigid clutches of IKU-TURSO and “Ikuinen Kirous”. Despite some heartfelt yet rather off-putting vocal scourges during “Ebenezer”, an otherwise desperate and fiendishly intense cut, the rest of the album plays out as smooth as an early morning crest befalling desolate shores. A unique Leviathan of a record that will pull you deep into the darkest crevasses one moment and rip you violently from the depths into a spiraling flight the next. A record to be proud of, and just another fine example of the genre’s capacity for evolutionary branching out as it stands firmly rooted in the ways of old.
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