Vetrar Draugurinn – The Night Sky

Vetrar Draugurinn
The Night Sky
Dark Skies Coming
October 01st, 2021
Playing time: 54:55

Two years have passed since the album debut “Hinterlands”. Now Vetrar Draugurinn are following up. The release of “The Night Sky” is scheduled for early October. The first good news, there were no changes in the line-up. So the Dutch should have been able to work continuously. Apart from the effects brought about by the worldwide pandemic. However, the follow-up is released on a new label, their own under the name Dark Skies Coming. The album is available via various streaming platforms, the band’s Bandcamp page and other websites, due to the drastic changes in the music industry.

As we already know from the predecessor, Vetrar Draugurunn are masters of the slowdown. You notice this from the very first note. Lower tuned guitars, calm riffs and hooklines, oppressive bass lines. Even the double bass seems slowed down. The icing on the cake is of course the ethereal vocals of front woman Marjan Welman. You might even sink into melancholy. “The Observer” thus becomes an absolutely fitting introduction. Could it be any darker? Absolutely, as the Dutch prove with the title track “The Night Sky”. Fittingly, the vocals are also a little deeper. On “Lansdown Hill” you can hear Mark Kelson from the Australian Dark Metallers The Eternal as guest singer. Clean and acoustic guitars? There are those here too, on “The Fear Of Letting Go”, counterpointed by deep mellotron sounds. An extremely dark instrumental par excellence. And no, this is definitely not an interlude, with a length of more than six minutes. Eric Hazebroek was not responsible for the composition, but the second guitarist Thomas Cochrane. In contrast, “The Lonely” sounds almost upbeat. Although the gloom dominates here as well. “Our Lady Of Perpetual Emptiness” sounds as if the musicians had to take a breather afterwards, so calm and contemplative does the song seem. With a minimalistic use of the individual instruments. This seems to be the ballad on the album. “As I Drift On An Ocean Towards A Distant Shore” starts with industrial sound effects. But soon the deep guitar riffs roar out of the speakers. If the other songs on “The Night Sky” are not exactly short, the closing song “Reynisfjara” surpasses them all by far. Named after a black sandy beach on Iceland. Fittingly, at the end you hear the sound of waves rolling onto the beach. This closes the circle to the band’s name (Vetrar Draugurinn = Icelandic for winter ghosts). A varied little epic as a crowning conclusion.

On “The Night Sky”, the Dutch present Epic Doom of the top class. They impressively prove that you don’t necessarily have to come from the far north of Scandinavia with its extremely long winter nights to create dark worlds of sound. Vetrar Draugurinn have made excellent use of the concert-free time. Eight sound giants are the result.  

Vetrar Draugurinn – “The Night Sky (Official Lyric Video): https://youtu.be/Sbu1vCRMMUk

Lineup:

Marjan Welman – Vocals
Eric Hazebroek – Guitar, Mellotron
Thomas Cochrane – Guitar
Arjan Heijden – Bass
Jim van de Kerkhof – Drums, Percussion

Track list:

  • The Observer
  • The Night Sky
  • Lansdown Hill
  • The Fear Of Letting Go
  • The Lonely
  • Our Lady Of Perpetual Emptiness
  • As I Drift On An Ocean Towards A Distant Shore
  • Reynisfjara
  • 9/10
    Album - 9/10
  • 8/10
    Cover-Art - 8/10
  • 9/10
    Songwriting - 9/10
8.7/10
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