(9/10) This record is one of the most jaw-dropping releases in the last months. I haven't heard from the band before and therefore I was pretty open in what to expect.
Maybe to start with some facts first. The band comes from Spain and "Mantiis" is their debut album. The band pressed 500 copies of the album in 2012 and those have been sold in no time.
Now, 2 years later, the album gets a proper release by Season Of Mist.
The first remarkable fact is the cover. It might look a bit weird but it expresses really well of what to expect. The album spreads a vibe of unease ... and this isn't meant in a negative way. You have to find your way into the record.
"Not yet five" starts with sphereful soundscapes based on bass and some keyboards. The guitar joins a long the way and whole thing sounds like a prelude for the inferno. An instrumental that leads to "Oncoming dark". The tune starts very light with acoustic guitars and melodic vocal lines. It's a nice swing in the track and you feel safe...at least in the beginning. But the song takes an unusual twist towards the end and becomes really heavy. This heaviness continues in "Through the glass" when heavy riffs kill the silence and the lightness. The whole music develops that far that "Cinnamon balls" can be seen as a pure boisterous black metal track.
Some time to digest is needed and the band offers this with the intermezzo "The nurse". But latest with "Last of the light" your back in black. But also here the song takes an unusual twist. What starts as a black metal monster turns into a jazzy mid part with a chilling sphere and a horn section. And the amazing thing; all fits together. The sunshine after the thunderstorm would describe the change best.
And the journey continues. The other songs follow the same exciting pattern of soft vs. hard, loud vs. quite, light vs. dark by transporting a lot of emotions.
"Mantiis" is really big. Full of feelings and big melodies which are confronted with brutal black metal assaults. And album that catches you from the very first moment on and will offer a lot of small new details with each round on the turntable.
Go for it. This album streches the limits.
- Not yet five
- Oncoming dark
- Through the glass
- Cinnamon balls
- The nurse
- Answers revealing
- Last of the light
- Genteel to mention
- Awake until dawn
- Haunts of the underworld
- Endless wall
- Finger in anguish
- And then it was
Label: Season Of Mist
Genre: Prog Black Metal