Arx Atrata is a name not known to me until recently and I yearn to know it very well now. Stumbling upon The Path Untraveled, I am left in awe. Though I have yet to delve into the previous two albums, this newest release also sets me down a path, of exploration and discovery. Atmospheric. Blackened. Frost laden. Every track within this album is sorrowfully stunning.
You know the best part of this album? The final track is aptly named The Wraith, which is a term I use to refer to black metal artists in general. 'Tis a sign, I tell you. And yes, it is a stellar track. I honestly have a hard time picking a favorite on this album. Each piece offers something I enjoy. Along with the CD and its haunting boreal artwork, I could not resist obtaining and doning the bone-coloured Wraith shirt. I have to carry the Metal beckon in this remote land I wander, for there are so many who do not appreciate the sounds within such albums.
As for the track breakdown, it begins with MCMLXXVII *nods in approval of the numeral usage*. This is the intro leading into To Be Reborn although separated and allows the track to work with or without it. Thundering off with power, To Be Reborn does not stop nor is there any specific point I can recommend to point out since the whole damn track offers something astounding in each second. The only available upload so far, An Undying Verse thrums into existence and shortly goes to work. The chorus in the track has to be one of my favorites, the vocals and instruments work so well together, each complementing one another. Next up, The Untraveled Path. Flowing back and forth between instruments and vocals being prominent, this beyond ten minute track showcase the prowess of this artist. As for the next track, which may have my favorite opening, Elmet emerges with the sweet melody of a fire crackling, birds chirping, and the sweet allure of a guitar. The entire track rises and falls with wicked energy however from 7:18 to the end is utterly enthralling. Second to last, Brethren and Betrayer lulls you in with a piano before sundering the air and not slowing until the end where it returns to where it began. I'd say the intro into the first portion of vocals is what always hooks me with this track. Lastly, we have The Wraith. Setting off with drums followed by intense guitar work, this track gallops and grows, assailing you with no escape. Over ten minutes as well, I found this track to catch me the most. There is a portion that is familiar yet I cannot remember what it reminds me of and it leaves me agitated but excited for more listens and causing me to chase back into my collection for answers. This track has some killer guitar work in it and the structure is fantastic. A mighty track to end such a riveting album.
An awesome album to usher in the end of October. Give Arx Atrata a listen as the cold creeps in and you stare out the window, haunted by The Path Untravelled before you. /,,/
THE MAD BARRON
The Source Of The Metal