Pure Wrath is a one-man atmospheric black metal band from Indonesia, and his new ep entitled The Forlorn Soldier pushes the boundaries of the genre and masterfully crafts a work of art well worth looking at. The emergence of one-man black metal bands such as Xasthur, Leviathan etc. showed the world how diverse and malleable the spine-tingling sounds of black metal can be. The experts of the craft have the ability to keep things varied and to invoke emotive responses, and The Forlorn Soldier does this perfectly.
Overall, there is a great amount of melody counterbalanced by rhythmic sections reminiscent of the earlier Norwegian acts. The influences are on display here; however, it has a very distinct sound and never feels like a mere copy or rip off. The keyboards mingled throughout this release performed by Dice Midyanti are exceptional and add a fog of obscurity and beauty to the melodic sections. The keyboard composition/spoken word closing out When a Great Man Dies takes hold of the listener and seeps into the brain like tentacles and exemplifies the thought-provoking lyrics. It is the story of real-life incidents during a genocide in the 60s in Indonesia, offering emotional insights into how these events shaped the society and their children. Guest drums were performed by Yurii Kononov and again add to the black metal onslaught.
The songs never get stale, and they sail onward propelled by blast beats and the rhythmic groove of black metal we know and love. This ep pulls the listener into the world of Pure Wrath, and atmospheric black metal is one of those subgenres which takes one into a completely different realm and is at the mercy of the artist. The Forlorn Soldier is more than an extreme metal album, it is an exceptionally crafted window into a very real world ignored by some, leaking with emotion and sincerity.
Release date: March 6th, 2020
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