SPECTRAL - Arctic Sunrise

Spectral - Arctic Sunrise

9 songs
39:57 minutes
***** ***


German pagan black metal band Spectral has been active since 1995 and released already six longplayers. And despite their hometown Gerolstein being only 100 kilometres away from Luxembourg, I never heard of these five gentlemen before their current album Arctic Sunrise, coming five years after its predecessor. In the meantime the band replaced one guitarist and the bassist.

But back to Arctic Sunrise which begins with an awkward spoken word intro. Much more excessive is the following title track which offers rather primeval black metal. And yet this track is five minutes long and next to brutal parts with evil growls, Spectral also show their more atmospheric, and even symphonic side. The band also has shorter songs, on which they usually sound faster, rawer and generally more direct. The songs are sometimes kept rather simple, but always full of charm, reminding from the attitude of early Sodom. The albumís centre piece is titled Nuclear Assault, and although it may not be a tribute to the thrash legends, it still contains an excellent mix of wild attacks and harmonic moments. This is the albumís most elaborate track. On the following In Battle With Fire And Steel, we get black metal that comes with a rough dose of folk metal parts. Path Of The Damned is a quieter track with a certain campfire ambience that feels like a fitting tribute to Bathory. The last two tracks end the album on a more aggressive note.

No one will ever accuse Spectral of playing the most complex kind of metal, and yet it must be said that Arctic Sunrise is a fun listening experience. The songs may be simple, but also full of heartís blood. Arctic Sunrise is an entertaining affair from beginning to end and should appeal to every fan of straight delivered extreme metal.

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