From the very first track, aptly named “Cold Burn”, this album is big and heavy, full of harsh screams and slow, plodding riffs that occasionally create interesting little melodies. It also has a nice intro, repeating a slow and heavy riff.
Its mix of harsh riffs and vocals, more melodic parts, and a cold atmosphere is what this album is made of. Other tracks keep the same formula but with many variations, so that the album retains the same creativity through and through. Some tracks like “The Silver Arc” are equally heavy but sometimes slow and sinister, and sometimes quieter and melancholic. “Blood upon Stone” is mostly heavy and menacing with a more melodic middle.
Both clean and harsh vocals can be heard throughout the album, either done by lead vocalist Johannes Persson, or by Mariam Wallentin, a guest singer with a dark and melancholic voice in the quiet and sinister “Beyond I. Into the Night” begins with a melancholic melody and low-pitched, tormented singing before ending on weird guitar sounds and screams.
Others like “An Offering to the Wild” take time to play and experiment with melodies and create a strange atmosphere, mixing soft riffs with harsh vocals. The instrumental “Full Moon” has a soft melody, with heavier guitars hiding in the background. The title track starts with a long and soft intro before turning into a furiously heavy track with harsh screams, but also includes soft vocalizing, slow and sinister melodies, both heaviness and melancholy. This one perfectly sums up the peculiar style of this album.
This is an album that mixes sweetness with ferocity, a blend of sadness and negative emotions with hope. Because of its heavy, sometimes repetitive, sometimes desperate and sometimes mellow and hopeful tone, it feels like a long exploration of a cold northern road, as the title promises. Beyond poetic descriptions, this album is a pretty creative and entertaining one. It sounds really nice, it feels big and creative. If you want a long album you could lose yourself into, and that feels like travelling through a mysterious cold world, this is what you need to hear.
Release date: February 11th, 2022
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