REGNAT HORRENDUM — Heathenland

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REGNAT HORRENDUM - Heathenland cover
3.67 | 2 ratings | 1 review
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Album · 2018

Tracklist

1. The Flame of Purification (6:12)
2. Halls of Chernobog (4:50)
3. Dragons of the Sea (5:44)
4. To Each His Own (4:21)
5. Before Belobog (5:01)
6. Night of the Black Wings (5:15)
7. Raven and Oak (4:51)
8. Icebound Faces (6:09)
9. Worlds of Dead Birds (4:02)

Total Time 46:25

Line-up/Musicians

- Skilar Blackwings / All instruments
- Alexey Lapshov / Vocals

About this release

Format: Digital
Label: Independent
Release date: January 2nd, 2018

Thanks to adg211288 for the addition

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REGNAT HORRENDUM HEATHENLAND reviews

Specialists/collaborators reviews

siLLy puPPy
REGNAT HORRENDUM is the side-project of the band Moongates Guardian which is famous for imitating the symphonic Tolkien inspired black metal of Austria’s Summoning. Both of these bands come from the Kaliningrad region of Russia, you know that little eastern most edge of what was the Soviet Union that remained in Russian territory even though it is separated by Lithuania and Belarus? Yeah, that one! This is a fairly new project having only formed in 2017 however in only three years REGNAT HORRENDUM has released two albums, two EPs and a split with Old Scythia.

While regarded as Pagan black metal for its Earthy based themes derived from ancient polytheistic pastimes, this band is more often referred to as a symphonic black metal band but in reality both those aspects only describe a part of this band’s formula. While the themes may be Pagan and the distorted guitars and raspy vocals screeeeeeeam black metal, the melodies and musical flow are more akin to the Finnish folk metal declarations of Ensiferum with a touch of drinking metal immediacy of Korpiklaani. Thyrfing and Falkenbach are two other bands often associated with REGNAT HORRENDUM.

HEATHENLAND is the band’s debut released in 2017 and cuts nine tracks that race past the 46 minute mark and in their wake leave breadcrumb trail of Summoning style symphonic black metal that relishes in danceable drunken Viking at the bar melodies and oft cheesy keyboard-led movie soundtrack drama that threatens to derail the entire album but somehow remains thematically stable. While the melodic themes are right out of the folk metal world, the incessant blackened guitar riffs and angrier-than-thou wrath of the vocals keep this procession of incongruent sounds anchored in the domain of black metal bleakness.

In fact this is a very strange album indeed as musically it has little in common with black metal at all whether it be atmospheric, symphonic or blackgaze or whatever. The Summoning influences are clear in how the keyboards dominate the musical procession with harmonizing melodies over the rampaging guitar tracks but the folky Viking festivities keep this one from ever feeling like a true black metal album which may be a bit put-offing for many especially the kvlter-than-thou crowds. There is no doubt that REGNAT HORRENDUM has crafted an intricately designed album that weaves disparate metal elements together quite seamlessly and HEATHENLAND is graced by a slick production that keeps the grimy rawness of the black metal elements authentic. There are often call and response between raspy black metal vocals and guttural death metal growls.

While i can completely understand why many will not exactly embrace the stylistic approach going on here as it sounds like the Grim Reaper has crashed a Viking wedding and is singing farewell liturgy to the bride but in all honestly i kind of like this one quite a bit! It’s all so familiar with catchy Baltic folk melodies, brutal black metal riffs harmonizing with soaring atmospheric swirls and decently designed arrangements but just off the cuff enough to make this stand out from the burgeoning pack of melodic metal bands out there. Of course there is a certain cheese element going on here especially in some of the keyboard runs and at times the whole thing comes off as a bit of a Dethklok sort of joke but in the end i find this quite enjoyable and i really appreciate the energetic display of metal in conjunct with the soft pacifying piano melodies and other soothing synth elements. Summoning influenced for sure but no clone.

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