24 June, 2013

October Falls: Boiling Heart Of The North – new video & The Plague Of Coming Age – full album stream

OCTOBER FALLS should be much more popular than they are; they should be sharing stages across the States with Paganfest bands, or at the very least, headlining small festivals in Germany and thrilling European crowds. Their music is finely tuned, beautifully composed, and an excellent example of how well this style of melodic, dark metal can be done. This is an album to return to on cold and lonesome evenings,” [had argued Pitchfork's Kim Kelly (more here), and I concur]
Directed by Håkan Sjödin, ‘Boiling Heart Of The North’ comes off OCTOBER FALLS' latest opus, ‘The Plague Of A Coming Age’, issued in March 2013 through that fine French label (which functions under the the maxim: “And the Lord said, I will destroy man whom I have created from the face of the earth; both man, and beast, and the creeping thing, and the fowls of the air; for it repenteth me that I have made them”), Debemur Morti Productions. For ‘The Plague Of Coming Age’, OCTOBER FALLS' mastermind M. Lehto once again surrounded himself with gifted musicians, namely MOONSORROW's Marko Tarvonen on drums and ENSIFERUM's Sami Hinkka on bass, as well as guest musicians AMORPHIS' Tomi Joutsen and V. Metsola on acoustic guitar. The album's art was created by Argentinean artist Santiago Caruso. Available as CD and as vinyl, ‘The Plague Of Coming Age’ awaits you here (Debemur Morti store):

Formed in 2001 in Helsinki, Finland by M. Lehto, OCTOBER FALLS' debut recording came out in 2003; dark, acoustic EP ‘Tuoni’ was in 2005 followed by instrumental, classical guitar-guided full-length album ‘Marras’. On the mostly solo projects' Debemur Morti Productions debut, the ‘Streams Of The End’ EP, harsher elements were first introduced, blending folk with harsh black and pagan metal:
“Lush tones create a morose mood, while the cold manifestations drift slowly, reverberating off wistful woodland and caressing fecund foliage in some dark, wintry forest at the heart of the Great North. The songs are suffused in diversity and dynamic, sometimes serene and soothing but also generating sensations of inconsolable grief, tortured anguish and utter desperation. Quiver and cower beneath the might of nature, as gloom and despondency infect your isolated essence, giving rise to a well of emotions condemned to lie dormant in those untouched by OCTOBER FALLS' rich arrangements. Allow the sparse, chilly landscape to engulf your soul, while the artist’s singular vision shrouds you in mist and shatters your world,” [cheerfully recommended the label:]
After 2007's EP ‘Sarastus’, OCTOBER FALLS welcomed Marko Tarvonen; 2008's LP ‘The Womb Of Primordial Nature’, described as “ fatuously romantic” by Cosmo Lee, AllMusic (more here), thusly featured M. Lehto on guitar and vocals, V. Metsola on bass and M. Tarvonen on drums:
“A celebration of life and death – and the agony that inevitably marks both – the bipolar expressions seamlessly blend folk sensibilities with harsh dissonance to arrive at a unique and uninhabited destination. Rich and beautiful; classical and harmonic; yet also decayed and awash with inconsolable despair. The vast vistas and lycanthropic landscapes encountered during these four epic tracks are tragic, morose and discomforting,” [the label disagreed with the music critic:]

Two years later, the same lineup recorded ‘A Collapse Of Faith’; issued in 2010, OCTOBER FALLS' most mature effort so far proved to be the last recorded with V. Metsola:
“Feral spirits gather beneath the pallid glow of a full moon, slender slivers of pale light barely illuminating their foul forms. The figures flicker – almost imperceptibly – paying homage to the dark night skies, shapeshifting shadows shimmering across a vast, timeless horizon. Night's cold, lupine teeth bite hungrily, searing the glimmering lifeforms as nature follows its tragic course, a terrible, irresistible union of beauty and cruelty. The blood of generations seeps into the soil; from this death shall life rise once more. Horns chime for the end; burial mounds of ash pile high, reaching desperately towards an indifferent sky. All human ideals are shattered; pride is torn apart; faith collapses in a quivering, worthless heap. Rivers run red and a grateful world thrives, cleansed of human ineptitude,” [added instructions my current favourite label:]
OCTOBER FALLS features: M. Lehto – guitar, S. Hinkka – bass and M.Tarvonen – drums

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