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Vattnet Viskar was a post-black metal act from the United States. The band was active between 2010-2016 and released two studio albums, Sky Swallower (2013) and Settler (2015).

After vocalist and guitarist Nicholas Thornbury exited the band in 2016 the remaining members shortened the name to Vattnet and changed musical direction. The self-titled debut album of this new incarnation was released in 2017.

- Biography by adg211288, September 2017.

For the follow-up band, see Vattnet:
Thanks to Kev Rowland for the addition and adg211288 for the updates


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VATTNET VISKAR albums / top albums

VATTNET VISKAR Sky Swallower album cover 2.94 | 4 ratings
Sky Swallower
Atmospheric Black Metal 2013
VATTNET VISKAR Settler album cover 4.21 | 6 ratings
Atmospheric Black Metal 2015


VATTNET VISKAR Vattnet Viskar album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Vattnet Viskar
Atmospheric Black Metal 2012

VATTNET VISKAR live albums

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

VATTNET VISKAR Demo 2011 album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Demo 2011
Atmospheric Black Metal 2011

VATTNET VISKAR re-issues & compilations

VATTNET VISKAR 2011​-​2015 album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Atmospheric Black Metal 2016

VATTNET VISKAR singles (0)

VATTNET VISKAR movies (DVD, Blu-Ray or VHS)



Album · 2015 · Atmospheric Black Metal
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The artwork for Settler by Vattnet Viskar (who'd drop the "Viskar" after this release) seems unusually bright and sunny for a black metal album, which prompted raised eyebrows at its release, but don't be fooled - we're not quite out of the howling darkness yet. See, the cover art depicts Christa McAuliffe, one of the astronauts who died in the Challenger disaster, on a zero-G training flight, so if you want gory, firey death, there's an implication of it right there.

But as others have noted, the album isn't solely about that. Following the trend in American atmospheric black metal bands to broaden the emotional palette of black metal-inspired music, Vattnet Viskar use the disaster to contemplate themes of exploration, competition, and the sacrifices people make for both. As you might expect, some Deafheaven-esque blackgaze influences make it in here and there, and the spaceflight theme prompts the band to seek to not only inspire terror but also convey an awe of the cosmos.

It's all well and good, and not as far from black metal tradition as purists might make out - cosmic and space themes have crept into black metal frequently over the years, and Darkspace have made a career out of just that - but the fact that the album isn't the major sonic departure from precedent that purists were afraid it would be is, in and of itself, a bit of a disappointment. Yes, there's sludge and blackgaze influences creeping in here and there, but all too often it slips back to a more generic atmospheric black metal sound, which when you consider the more audacious space trips groups like Darkspace and Progenie Terrestre Pura have each offered in their own distinct way feels like a missed opportunity.

It's still a very solid four-star album, but I feel like Vattnet have yet to truly break free from the atmospheric black metal pack. You only need to listen to one album from those other bands I've mentioned to get a really firm idea of what their sound is; I'm still not sure I know what the Vattnet sound is.


Album · 2015 · Atmospheric Black Metal
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Settler (2015) is the second full-length album by US black metal act Vattnet Viskar. The band, whose previous release was Sky Swallower (2013), were inspired by 1986 Space Shuttle Challenger disaster for the album, with particular attention given to Christa McAuliffe, the school teacher who was chosen by NASA to take part in the mission as part of their Teacher in Space Project, which ended with the explosion of the shuttle 73 seconds after it launched - which is actually the one event of this true story that Vattnet Viskar have chosen to leave out of the album. The reasoning behind this concept is, according to guitarist Chris Alfieri in an interview with Decibel Magazine dated June 17th 2015: "Christa was from Concord, New Hampshire, the town that I live in. One of my first memories is the Challenger mission’s demise, so it’s a personal thing for me. But the album isn’t about the explosion, its about everything else. Pushing to become something else, something better. A transformation, and touching the divine." The album's cover artwork, which is quite unusual for a black metal release, is based off a photograph of Christa McAuliffe.

The core of the music on Settler is atmospheric black metal (sometimes leaning towards blackgaze) but there are also strong sludge metal elements that add a much heavier edge to the proceedings. At times, the album sounds less black metal and more like some kind of atmospheric early Mastodon. The eight track release isn't that long, falling a little shy of the forty minute mark, making the individual songs all short and to the point, but with a good flow between them to make Settler an experience best taken in a single sitting, which the short running time makes very doable. No ideas in the composition outstay their welcome this way. It's a very easy album to listen to over and over. The harsh vocals of Nicholas Thornbury don't make easy following and as is the case with a lot of black metal like this (with or without the sludge element) they feel more like a component of the atmosphere the band is creating, rather than something to carry the track forward. If I had to pick a favourite track I think I'd have to say the second song on the album, Colony. I like the way it switches from absorbing atmospheric black metal to crushing sludge.

It's an instantly impressive release, but it's only with subsequent listens that I begin to really appreciate what a real gem of the black metal genre Settler is. For all the genre's reputation for raw, under-produced sounds and corpse painted musicians there exist groups like Vattnet Viskar and albums like Settler, which show the style's diversity. This is a mesmerising release from the group. It could even be considered a beautiful piece of work in many respects as the band clearly have an ear for melody, which has a big presence on Settler. The album has been steadily working its way up my list of 2015 releases, and I'd say that out of everything I listened to for the year, this is most definitely in the top five. Highly recommended!


Album · 2013 · Atmospheric Black Metal
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Kev Rowland
When one sees a bandname like this one immediately thinks of Swedish Black Metal, maybe with some corpsepaint, so it is somewhat strange to find that these are fairly normal looking guys from New Hampshire. Going to Google Translate I discover that their name means ‘Water is Calling’, so not exactly dark and demonic after all. It is far more exciting in Swedish, but it does the job in conjuring up a mental image which the music does nothing to destroy. Brett Boland needs to stand up and take a bow, as his production here is exemplary, and actually has as much impact as the music itself, which the label describes as “atmospheric black metal devotion, filtered through the members’ own hardcore pasts and imbued with doom metal’s heart-rending heaviness.” So there you have it.

And I have to say that I agree with the above comments; it is a very good and apt description, I just wish that the music itself was better. I firmly believe that if the production wasn’t so incredibly strong and powerful, then this album would be half of what it ended up as. Although every element is good in its’ own right, this is let down by the quality of the songs. There are times when there is just too much repetition and they are allowed to drag on for too long so that the impact is negated and the effect is lost. That is a real shame as there are times when this is top quality, when everything comes together perfectly, but there are too many times when I wonder what I should listen to next.

So, a debut with some promise, but we will have to see if they can come up with something more definitive next time.


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