CRONIAN - Enterprise

Cronian - Enterprise

9 songs
48:40 minutes
***** ***


When Andreas Hedlund of Vintersorg fame became the vocalist of Norwegian progressive black metal band Borknagar in 2000, he and Borknagar band founder and guitarist Řystein Garnes Brun quickly discovered that they had common musical ideas that needed to be explored outside of their main band. Two years ago, a first album called Terra was released by Century Media. The two guys must have tasted blood, because now they are back already with their follow-up Enterprise.

In the mid-Nineties, the nascent Borknagar were one of the most innovative black metal bands. They were the first to combine epic power metal sensibilities with pitch black metal. Cronian can be considered an even more courageous extrapolation. The black metal roots are still there, but safely locked in a far away corner. Instead we get epic progressive power metal structures with lots of symphonic synth programming, and Vintersorg’s inimitable festive vocals. Apart from two instrumentals – the three minute long Cirque bisecting the album and the concluding End(durance) - Part II – we get complex songwriting that uses lengths between five and seven minutes to paint sonic landscapes that are full of surprises but nonetheless still always accessible. Folk elements are rare, despite Hedlund’s alter ego Vintersorg, instead Cronian are probably best called a progressive metal band, although their sound is far from what is currently sold under that label. Expect rather Borknagar minus the harsher black metal, and you’re already halfway there.

Fans of Borknagar will definitely love Enterprise, although I am convinced that everyone who is looking for innovative heavy metal will get hooked on this excellent release.

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