Review: Niðafjöll – Endir

Posted: July 10, 2016 in Reviews
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Niðafjöll - Endir

Iceland is a country that I don’t really know any bands from, other than Solstafir and Sigur Ros, and that’s why Niðafjöll are such a pleasant surprise. Thier debut record, ‘Endir’, is a sweeping take on symphonic black metal, and replete with folk elements and blackened tales of Norse mythology.

Each song has a haunting quality, as if they were written facing the northern wind and the frozen fjords. The sweeping black grandeur of ‘Jörmungandr’, that twists and writhes like the World Serpent itself, is an early highlight, as slow sections emerge and keyboard elements begin to play more of a role. The gloomy ‘Vébönd Rofin’ is a personal favourite, but there are many good tracks to choose from.

Niðafjöll don’t skimp on the ferocity though, with some sections of white hot black metal that are not bastardized into symphonics, but the best parts are when the folky, pagan side truly emerges and you get pieces like the evocative piano led ‘Andvari’. It has strong, harsh moments as well, and those riffs are a bit ugly in places, as is the groaning ‘Sól Tér Sortnar’. ‘Endir’ is a great, varied record that has its quiet moments, but equally as many moments of molten, flowing black metal.

I’d recommend ‘Endir’ to anyone who likes atmospheric black metal, and appreciates music that doesn’t always stay pigeonholed. Glistening keyboard melodies sit amongst raw tremolo riffs, and it becomes harder and harder to fathom that this is a one man outfit. Superb.


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