DRUDKH

Atmospheric Black Metal / Non-Metal • Ukraine
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Drudkh, which means 'wood' in Sanskrit, is an atmospheric/pagan black metal act from Ukraine, formed in Kharkiv during 2002 with Roman Saenko and Roman Blagih (A.K.A. Thurios) initially operating as a duo. With a session drummer they released the debut Drudkh album Forgotten Legends in 2003.

In 2004 Mykola Sostin (A.K.A. Amorth) joined the band as a third member, playing keyboards on the second album Autumn Aurora, before also taking over the drummer role full-time. He left the band in 2006, having recorded two further albums with Drudkh; Лебединий шлях (The Swan Road) in 2005 and Кров у наших криницях (Blood in Our Wells) in 2006. The first of these also marked a switch in Drudkh's lyrics, now favouring the work of Ukrainian poets, particularly that of Taras Shevchenko (1814-1861), also others. Кров у наших криницях (Blood in Our Wells), the fourth album, has since achieved a high regard among black
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Season of Mist 2012
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They Often See Dreams About the Spring (Ltd. Ed. Silver vinyl)They Often See Dreams About the Spring (Ltd. Ed. Silver vinyl)
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Few Lines in Archaic UkrainianFew Lines in Archaic Ukrainian
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DRUDKH Discography

DRUDKH albums / top albums

DRUDKH Forgotten Legends album cover 3.42 | 18 ratings
Forgotten Legends
Atmospheric Black Metal 2003
DRUDKH Autumn Aurora album cover 4.22 | 26 ratings
Autumn Aurora
Atmospheric Black Metal 2004
DRUDKH Лебединий шлях (The Swan Road) album cover 3.19 | 14 ratings
Лебединий шлях (The Swan Road)
Atmospheric Black Metal 2005
DRUDKH Кров у наших криницях (Blood in Our Wells) album cover 4.09 | 26 ratings
Кров у наших криницях (Blood in Our Wells)
Atmospheric Black Metal 2006
DRUDKH Пісні скорботи і самітності (Songs of Grief and Solitude) album cover 3.23 | 15 ratings
Пісні скорботи і самітності (Songs of Grief and Solitude)
Non-Metal 2006
DRUDKH Відчуженість (Estrangement) album cover 4.12 | 17 ratings
Відчуженість (Estrangement)
Atmospheric Black Metal 2007
DRUDKH Microcosmos album cover 3.40 | 18 ratings
Microcosmos
Atmospheric Black Metal 2009
DRUDKH Пригорща зірок (Handful of Stars) album cover 3.65 | 17 ratings
Пригорща зірок (Handful of Stars)
Atmospheric Black Metal 2010
DRUDKH Вічний оберт колеса (Eternal Turn of the Wheel) album cover 3.62 | 12 ratings
Вічний оберт колеса (Eternal Turn of the Wheel)
Atmospheric Black Metal 2012
DRUDKH Борозна обірвалася (A Furrow Cut Short) album cover 3.75 | 8 ratings
Борозна обірвалася (A Furrow Cut Short)
Atmospheric Black Metal 2015
DRUDKH Їм часто сниться капіж (They Often See Dreams About the Spring) album cover 3.88 | 4 ratings
Їм часто сниться капіж (They Often See Dreams About the Spring)
Atmospheric Black Metal 2018

DRUDKH EPs & splits

DRUDKH Anti-Urban album cover 2.31 | 4 ratings
Anti-Urban
Atmospheric Black Metal 2007
DRUDKH Slavonic Chronicles album cover 3.07 | 3 ratings
Slavonic Chronicles
Atmospheric Black Metal 2010
DRUDKH Thousands of Moons Ago / The Gates album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Thousands of Moons Ago / The Gates
Atmospheric Black Metal 2014
DRUDKH Той, хто говорить з імлою (One Who Talks with the Fog) / Pyre Era, Black! album cover 3.00 | 1 ratings
Той, хто говорить з імлою (One Who Talks with the Fog) / Pyre Era, Black!
Atmospheric Black Metal 2016
DRUDKH Зраджені сонцем (Betrayed by the Sun) / Hägringar (Mirages) album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Зраджені сонцем (Betrayed by the Sun) / Hägringar (Mirages)
Atmospheric Black Metal 2016
DRUDKH Десь блукає журба (Somewhere Sadness Wanders) / Schnee (IV) album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Десь блукає журба (Somewhere Sadness Wanders) / Schnee (IV)
Atmospheric Black Metal 2017

DRUDKH live albums

DRUDKH demos, promos, fans club and other releases (no bootlegs)

DRUDKH re-issues & compilations

DRUDKH Wooden Box album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Wooden Box
Atmospheric Black Metal 2007
DRUDKH Eastern Frontier in Flames album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Eastern Frontier in Flames
Atmospheric Black Metal 2014

DRUDKH singles (0)

DRUDKH movies (DVD, Blu-Ray or VHS)

DRUDKH Reviews

DRUDKH Кров у наших криницях (Blood in Our Wells)

Album · 2006 · Atmospheric Black Metal
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Conor Fynes
'Blood In Our Wells (Кров у Наших Криницях, Krov u Nashykh Krynytsyakh) - Drudkh (7/10) Often matched up against their second work 'Autumn Aurora' as Drudkh's crowning achievement, it has been a long time coming for me to get around to hearing 'Blood In Our Wells'. They are a band who require no introduction; since their decidedly Burzum-inspired 'Forgotten Legends', they have represented Ukraine's enigmatic black metal scene with a particular focus on atmosphere. 'Blood In Our Wells' sees the band incorporating a greater measure of melody into their arboreal style, and while I might still point towards 'Aumn Aurora' as the greatest of what these Ukrainians have to offer, their fourth album is an ambitious expansion on their already intriguing sound.

One thing that's often mentioned about these guys is that they refuse to post their lyrics, and paired with the fact that most of the band's listeners will not be familiar with the finer elements of the Ukrainian tongue, this leaves the band's subject matter up to the listener's imagination. Like its predecessor 'The Swan Road' however, 'Blood In Our Wells' uses the work of regarded Ukrainian poets, complimenting the romantic lyrical imagery with an introspective atmosphere. Although Drudkh's sound still lurks about the lo-fi depths, the instruments are well mixed and clear. The vocals (presumably done by Thurios) are surprisingly distinct for a genre that often defaults on rasping; his delivery is aggressive and intelligible. Although the lyrical content is not 'original' to the band, it is incorporated beautifully into their music. It is not a far stretch to hear Drudkh's dreamlike atmosphere being matched with Lina Kostenko's agrarian metaphor.

Melody is a more prominent aspect of 'Blood In Our Wells', although this to realize itself most in the music's handful of dramatic climaxes; moments within the typically longwinded compositions in which all emotion is let loose. 'Furrows of Gods' and 'When The Flame Turns To Ashes' are both highlights on the album, maintaining the band's penchant for repetition only long enough to make their point. The latter of those two concludes on a particularly stunning note, collapsing into a melodic dirge among the greatest Drudkh have ever done. The album's second half becomes more longwinded, but the slight dip in quality does not break the atmosphere, which 'makes' the album. With the band's trademark addition of arboreal folk instrumentation into the black metal soundscape, 'Blood In Our Wells' makes for another stirring experience. It does not give the same shock, nor envelop me as much as did 'Autumn Aurora', but for the critical acclaim I had read of it, I have not found myself disappointed.

DRUDKH Вічний оберт колеса (Eternal Turn of the Wheel)

Album · 2012 · Atmospheric Black Metal
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Phonebook Eater
6/10

"Eternal Turn Of The Wheel" is a traditionally executed, yet pretty effective Atmospheric Black Metal.

Drudkh in 2012 are already considered Black Metal veterans. But the problem with veterans is that they get so used to the fact that they reach this status, that often they don’t try as hard to make good music. Though it does, after a while, come out pretty naturally. “Eternal Turn of the Wheel” indeed feels almost effortless, in a good way, but you can tell that some of the excitement of the earlier albums is gone.

With the usual, rough production, the band delivers a pretty standard, typical Atmospheric Black Metal album, that remains extremely consistent with Drudkh’s style. There is an overall less emphasis on the keyboards, which are used much more subtly. The vocals are probably the biggest change: much lower-pitched, less shrieked and a bit more human sounding, in contrast with the banshee vocals of the previous albums, a definitely interesting and quite different approach.

One of the darkest albums of the band, “Eternal Turn Of The Wheel” has a really intriguing, fascinating and gloomy atmosphere that reminds of a nocturnal, spectral, and especially, sylvan sight, where ancient ghosts roam around. The five tracks that together are only slightly more than thirty five minutes long, all feel very connected to one another, not only length-wise but also in terms of atmosphere: “Breath Of Cold Soil”, “When Gods Leave Their Emerald Halls”, Farewell To Autumn’s Sorrowful Birds” all feel like windy, crispy tracks that aren’t at all estranged from the rest of the band’s discography. They still deliver great, memorable moments and haunting atmospheres.

The closing track, ”Nights Woven Of Snow, Winds and Grey-Haired Star” feels a lot sludgier and crunchier, still however maintaining the chilly aura of the previous tracks. “Eternal Turn Of The Wheel” is a interesting and enjoyable Drudkh album that offers hints of originality occasionally; tradition though is a big aspect of this record, and as a consequence it doesn’t feel that different or distinguishing from other releases of this legendary Ukranian band, who I personally will always follow, no matter how habitual they might become.

DRUDKH Вічний оберт колеса (Eternal Turn of the Wheel)

Album · 2012 · Atmospheric Black Metal
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J-Man
Ukrainian black metal masters Drudkh have never been a band resistant to experimentation, and 2010's Handful of Stars showed the band adding more post-rock influences into their sound than ever before. Rather than signaling a change of direction for their future releases, Eternal Turn of the Wheel shows that this was more of a brief detour than a radical turnaround. The music here is dark, gloomy, and progressive black metal that signals a slight return to form for Drudkh while still remaining unique from the rest of the band's output. Eternal Turn of the Wheel is a good way to usher in 2012 for black metal fans; its ice-cold atmospheres and unique stylistic traits make it a highly worthwhile listen for fans of the forward-thinking variant of the style. Although I need to brush up on the rest of Drudkh's discography before I can claim that Eternal Turn of the Wheel is one of their finest works, there's not a doubt in my mind that this is one of the more impressive black metal records from the last few years.

While I've heard Eternal Turn of the Wheel described as Drudkh's return to their black metal roots, that shouldn't at all imply that this album is your standard-fare black metal effort. Drudkh still inject their raw sound with plenty of atmospheric soundscapes and progressive overtones, and the entire album is laden with a thick layer of gloom. In addition to plenty of somber chord progressions matched by miserable sounding vocal shrieks, an obscure fog of synthesizer melodies can be found throughout a majority of the album. The depressive and somewhat epic approach of Eternal Turn of the Wheel can make comparisons to acts like Burzum inevitable, but there's also a progressive edge that sets Drudkh apart from your average act in this increasingly stagnant genre. The beautiful acoustic break in "When Gods Leave Their Emerald Halls" is a section that always jumps out at me, and the generally long compositions all have an epic sensibility. This is the sort of album that's absolutely perfect for appreciating with a pair of headphones on a pitch-black evening - the nature-based imagery that Drudkh's music portrays, while often dark and frightening, can take me to the emotional highs that I look for when we're talking about this style of atmospheric black metal.

Though most experts will argue that black metal is past its peak, albums like Eternal Turn of the Wheel prove that the genre is still alive and well in 2012. This atmospheric, mature, and intense journey shows Drudkh at a definite creative peak, and while it lacks that extra 'something' for me to call it a masterpiece, there are a number of times where I'm inclined to do so. Eternal Turn of the Wheel is an excellent listen for fans of Drudkh and atmospheric black metal in general; though 2012 is still young, this should stand the test of time as one of the year's strongest extreme metal releases. 4 stars are very well-deserved.

DRUDKH Anti-Urban

EP · 2007 · Atmospheric Black Metal
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Conor Fynes
'Anti-Urban' - Drudkh (4/10)

Drudkh have always been a band that advocates a return to a simpler way of life, one that discards modern day conveniences and technology in favour of what they consider to be a more fulfilling existence in nature. This two song EP 'Anti-Urban' brings their message to the forefront, and delivers an afterthought of music to fans who may want an extra dose of the atmospheric black metal style that Drudkh plays. When it comes down to musical quality however, I find that 'Anti-Urban' is a fairly underwhelming and lacking experience, and while their style is nicely touched upon here, the music never gives enough depth to be worth more than a spin or two before moving on to better things that the band has produced.

'Anti-Urban' is a two track EP, and the first of these is 'Fallen Into Oblivion', an instrumental track that mostly consists of a melancholic melody getting looped and looped. It is a pleasant melody and even beautiful, but the track does not feel as if it builds up to much more than it is from the very beginning. The drums are simplistic and the way the guitars are played seems uninspired. 'Ashes' follows the same sound that 'Fallen Into Oblivion' started, but adds some ambient black metal rasps. They are mixed so low that it might as well have been another instrumental, but 'Ashes' does flow a little better than the first track... that is, until it just cuts out randomly, and then the EP is done. Drudkh has done some incredible things, but then, there are EPs like this (and albums like the bland 'Songs Of Grief & Soltitude) which make me wonder where their heads are at sometimes.

'Anti-Urban' is not necessarily bad, but just a tad unnecessary and uninspired.

DRUDKH Пригорща зірок (Handful of Stars)

Album · 2010 · Atmospheric Black Metal
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The Angry Scotsman
Drudkh, but with a more post influenced sound and cleaner guitar tone.

That is the simple review of this album. While the change in style was detectable on "Microcosmos" it really takes shape on "Handful of Stars". Much of the black metal is jettisoned and replaced with a much cleaner guitar sound, (there is still some distortion but not close to previous levels) and a more atmospheric, post rock structure, similar to Alcest. Some double bass thrashing and blast beats exist, and strictly harsh vocals, but that's about it. Obviously, the production is much improved, letting you hear every drum hit perfectly, and even bass!

This album has dense, drifty, subtlely changing walls of sound, subdued segments, and some great melodies. Even a guitar solo or two! All pushed forward with simple, yet effective drumming and topped off with gruff screams. They are not the most abrasive thing however, and work with the music.

Always glad to see a band change it up, (especially one from the dark depths of black metal) and this a great output from the obscure Ukrainian metal masters of Drudkh. Great songwriting that is truly moving, and ranging from hypnotic to powerful. Atmospheric metal.

Four Stars

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