Review: Kirkebrann – Mot Trellenes Forfall…

Hrafn and Draug, photo taken in 2012 by Harald Strømnæs

Band: Kirkebrann
Album: Mot Trellenes Forfall…
Genre: Black Metal
Country: Norway
Label: Hellstain Productions
Released: 28th of June 2024

Introduction

Kirkebrann is a Black Metal Band from Vestfold and Telemark, Norway. The Band was founded in 2004 and are active for 20 years. Already with 6 releases under their belt, this only being their second full length after some split releases with various great bands. Their style is pretty straight forward Black Metal yet melodic without losing its razor sharp edge.

Mot Trellenes Forfall…

Tracklist:

  1. Offer
  2. En Slaves Frihet
  3. Englemaker
  4. Manifest by Murder
  5. Tårer av Sand, et Liv i Grus
  6. Malstrøm
  7. Nattevred
  8. Den Som Hater
  9. Parasittenes Planet
  10. Vandringa
  11. Narkose Psykose
  12. Jakten på Visdom
  13. Vi Går med Stormskritt

Offer, the first track starts off with a melancholic lead guitar but don’t be fooled by it. About 10 seconds after the band releases an uncompromising black metal fury with the same guitar line lingering in the background before reaching a more midtempo bridge. The vocals are furious shrieks in similar fashion as the likes of true norwegian black metal greats e.g Taake. The production is very cold and haunting but yet pretty clear, noticable during the chilling slow tempo solo over the blasting drums.

En Slaves Frihet is going full throttle right from the start into a nice bass break before kicking in again with midtempo riffing. It’s a very nice black’n’roll kind of style similar to some mid 2000’s Satyricon. The song continues that way with a bit of Thorns up-picking before going full tempo following the drums.

The third track just starts at full speed without any care. Englemaker is more melodic than the first two songs which by no means makes it weaker. It’s still pure Black Metal carnage just with a touch more “structure” in a nice, old fashioned way.

Manifest by Murder, like the name implies, kicks in with a chilling scream like at a crime scene. It continues full tempo through and through until a change in pace occurs around the 3 minute mark when a Freezing Moon like breakdown with really obscure vocals comes in before it goes back to a nice full speed end.

The 5th track is again more Black’n’Roll riffing. I don’t really know how to describe rhe vocals this time. They are like a very rough coughing but not in a bad way, just different to the rest. Overall this track stands out a bit and will be definetly lead to excessive headbanging when played live.

Malstrøm is again an 180 degree turn , kicking it off with a great lead guitar and followed up by Gorgoroth type off riffing. The vocals here just continues to be amazing. Big respect to Draug for that performance. It is a rather short song but it kicks its way through with brute force.

Nattevred starts really different than anything before with a mouthharp and viking stle chantingy before the guitars kicks in agian with very melodic riffing. It nearly has some similarities to punk but also it seems that this song especially is heavily influenced by Enslaved.

The 8th track Den som Hater is the longest one with a runtime of nearly 9 minutes. Overall it’s a banger throughout with some atmospheric slower parts in between all the blastbeats. It is hard to describe a 9 minute masterpiece but I will stick to it and call it by it’s name, an absolute banger.

Parasittens Planet is like a war machine wiping out a whole planet as the song title implies, to cleanse it from Parasites. It fits the album perfectly following the 9 minute magnus opus leading into this 3.5min sonic bombardment. It powers through and through and it continues into…

…Vandringa , the 10th track directly follows the apocalyptic mess that Parasittens Planet left and further continues to destroy with riffing and blast beats at a tempo comparible to Marduk. Theres one thing that really stands out, another quick break with some kind of horn blowing before releasing melodic guitars that finish the song off.

Narkose Psykose, if a fitting name for the song as the intro feels like someone having a psychosis. It’s a fast paced heavy hitting gem on this record reminding me a bit of Urgehal. At the end of the song the lead guitar carries you through a choir that feels like a narcotic-induced dream.

The second to last song, Jakten på Visdom starts of very Immortal like guitar wise. Again important to point out is that the vocals just continue to impress with the ferociousness. Big kudos to Draug for keeping the same level of aggresiveness throughout the whole record. The overall musicianship is on par with anything that you would expect from the Black metal greats if even not at a higher standard.

The last song is a short yet great piano instrumental that finishes the album off. My two cents on that, I wish the next album starts with piano and continues on that level.

Conclusion

I very much appreciated this record. It is a well written masterpiece blending differnt elements together, yet sticking to the immense unforgiving brutallity of True Norwegian Black Metal. I am more than excited about what Kirkebrann will come up with in the next years. They are definetly a band that you should have on your radar and rose to the top for me with this album. My personal score for this album is definetly not exaggerated but a solid 9.5/10 and an Album of the year candidate for me.

BMZ Rating: 9,5/10

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Support Kirkebrann here: Music | Kirkebrann (bandcamp.com)

You can pre-order the album here: https://hellstain.eu/products/kirkebrann-mot-trellenes-forfall-black-vinyl

Your thoughts on Kirkebrann?

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