Review: ZHRINE “Unortheta” (by Bart Tomaszewski)

Review: ZHRINE “Unortheta” (by Bart Tomaszewski)

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ZHRINE “Unortheta”
Season of Mist records

Iceland is known first of all coz of geysers, volcanos and other nature’s “curiosities”. But superstition says that there’s practically nothing interesting except that.  Besides there’s dark, cold… all the time, people are row, maybe even half-savage and surely without any invention or even more creativity. I have impression that also on Metal scene many people think in similar way. Bands from this island are known only to a few. Rest even if they’ll by some accident will hear some of them treat them as something very  more exotic and even curiosity. Even in Europe they’re for quite many people more exotic than Malaysian or Indonesian ones. I have no idea why the hell it’s like that!

Especially that on the example of ZHRINE we can clearly see that Icelanders are really creative people. Band was found in 2007 and until now used three names. Present one is with band since last year – earlier was GONE POSTAL (2007 – 20014) and SHRINE (2014 – 2015). As GONE POSTAL guys (all of them play in ZHRINE) recorded three demos – “Promo 2008””, “Promo II” (2011) and “Unortheta” (2012), full-length – “In the Depths of Despair” (2008) and 4-way with GUTTURAL (Belgium – Death/Goregrind), PIKODEATH (Czech Rep – Death/Thrash) & DISEASED GHOUL (Germany – Death/Thrash/Grind). Under present name – single “Spewing Gloom” (2015) and full-length “Unortheta” (2016). Convergence of tittles of GONE POSTAL’s last release and this album isn’t any coincidence. On release under discussion there’s all song from demo – in one case it’s my supposition that “Clandestant Empre” from demo and “Empire” from album are one and the same song. Well, that’s clear for me that all of them were arranged in other way now than it was done four years earlier. Otherwise what would be sense of recording these songs under other name again?!?

Anyway, musicians call what they create as Death/Black Metal. Well, I think that it’s a little (or even a little more than a little) dumbing down and flatten. We have here of course Death and Black Metal! But not only and I can hear influences of other genres which sometimes have nothing to do with Metal (they’re very subtle and it’s rather hard to hear them). Well, don’t worry!!! This is definitely Metal and Death Metal dominate here! Anyway, tempos are variable – from low to fast. In these lower ones we know exactly and directly what Ævar (bass), Stefán (dr), Nökkvi (guit, voc) and Þorbjörn (guit, voc) mean with this Black Metal. From other side we could even call it Doom – at least in some really very slow parts. It’s hard to explain this, but during them you can see the deepest abyss of hell, feel shivers on your spine! As I said guys also know very well how to play really brutal music. So as you can see a lot happens here. But in the same time we absolutely haven’t any pie here! Everything is done artfully and tastefully. Everything goes together. I’ll tell more: we just can’t imagine this music could be other, we feel that it’s just as it should be!  Nökkvi and Þorbjörn present us vast range of growling. We can clearly hear difference between this which is used in more Death, more Black or even Doom parts.

Well, I could write more about this album. I could elaborate every riff, every bonk of drumstick…. In this music happens so many things and all of them are so interesting! But from other side why should I do it?!? Much more better will be if you’ll listen to it by yourself! I’m almost sure that you’ll fall in love with that!

(c) Bart Tomaszewski (SEPULCROS PROD)

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