Sapfhier – Trollskogen

sapfheir-trollskogenOriginally released by God Is Myth Records as a limited to 150 copies on CDr, the demand for Sapfhier material has inspired the label to update the artwork and put “Trollskogen” out again as a silver CD with a larger print run. Sapfhier is a very talented 1 man black metal band from Sweden that finds a creative foothold in the more symphonic realm where speed, dense harmonies and intense synth accompaniment congeal together to form a highly layered beast that is definitely inspired by early Emperor. The earlier nature of this material finds the synth tones to be perhaps too cheap sounding and a bit too dominant in the mix, but the their placement and use isn’t a bother since everything seems to be so perfectly placed and composed. Also on the thin side is the production on the drum machine, but again, the programming is so diversified and adept, that I quickly looked past the sounds to fully enjoy the lofty atmospheres introduced by Lord Aganaroth’s vision for music composition. The riffs are a bit lost in the mix on this, but their movement and attack is ever challenging and fierce as tremolo rhythms soar into slower, more in-key passages that ignite a pagan metal influence to take root and develop with more eclectic instrumentation and free flowing ideas. Flutes enter the picture on occasion and seem to fit in with Sapfhier’s overall scope, introducing this often-underappreciated instrument to fit in perfectly with the black metal medium. Lord Aganaroth’s vocals are in the middle registered screaming style and have the right amount of clarity and rasp to cut through the mix with sharp conviction. 9 well-composed tracks are on display here, offering a lot more feeling and in-depth musicianship than one would normally expect from an underground Swedish BM band (since most have the definite Dissection gene prevalent in their music). Lo-fi to the core, but produced just enough to really deliver this material with the needed level of intensity, “Trollskogen” is a criminally overlooked gem. Thanks to G.I.M. for realizing this CDs significance and giving it a wider birth. -Marty

~ by martyworm on January 3, 2009.

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