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3 out of 5 skulls
July 9, 2014 | ,

Graveborne Through the Window of the Night

To put it bluntly, there are a ton of black metal bands slinging blasting drums and frigid guitar tones with the grimmest and truest of intentions. Some get it right. Some don’t. Graveborne’s second full-length, Through the Window of the Night is sort of a mixed bag of both.

Now, don’t get me wrong, the music held within these nine blackened tunes are well played — the drumming is stellar and the seething riffage has just the right amount of arctic chill, as does the vehement vocals. Everyone does a really good job with their own portions of the album. It’s just sort of predictable. And that may be due to the amount of black metal I’ve been hearing the past couple of months, but regardless, Through the Window of the Night is a capable album. It’s just one that I’ve unfortunately already heard many times before.

That all said, Graveborne still actually have themselves a solid and enjoyable release here. Album opener “Burn The City of God” starts the affair off because it’s probably the strongest material here. It’s actually got more of a death metal vibe that comes across with a galloping groove and chunky guitars. And that’s when things start to get a bit generic with blasting, unrelenting (they never waver) drums, cold melodies and a repetitious scream that wears on the nerves rather quickly. “Into the Abyss” is a whirlwind of frantic drumming and rabid screams that, despite the lack of tempo shift or any other variation, hits pretty heavily.

“In the End I Find My Beginning” introduces some much needed atmosphere and a bit of downtime before launching into the blackened ice chipper of death. Once that happens, however, we get a little lost in the mix. The deeper vocal delivery on “Pyhää Verta” helps set it apart and “Men Behind the Sun” wraps up the album with a summary of just about everything we’ve heard up until that point.

Through the Window of the Night isn’t a terrible album. The guys of Graveborne have obviously spent their time honing their skills and snagging a good producer. It’s just that there’s really nothing on this album that hasn’t been done before. I’m not one to preach of uniqueness in a genre — I’m a sucker for the old school death metal sound so I know of repetition — but something is needed here to help separate these guys from the crowd.

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