Ewigkeit - Battle Furies 2.017 - (7.5/10)
Published on January 1, 2018
Battle Furies 2.017 by Ewigkeit is a re-recorded version of the original Battle Furies from 1997 with a much cleaner and clearer sound this time around. The original was a piece of fantasy-influenced melodic black metal produced by one James “Mr. Fog” Fogarty, formerly of The Meads of Asphodel and currently of In The Woods… and Old Forest. This re-recording of Battle Furies maintains its prominent 90s symphonic black metal feeling so well that you could picture yourself listening to this playing in the background of some forgotten Playstation fantasy game from ages gone past. That’s not to say this datedness hinders the album, in fact, it gives it a level of fantasy-fueled charm by trying to be grand and mystical with just one man, a guitar, and a keyboard, kind of like how some PS1 game soundtracks were made.
As a listen, this is pretty worthwhile for anybody looking for some mystic, uplifting black metal that has plenty of emotive melodies and a lively symphonic helping of keyboards. It’s a little odd to see a black metal album that uses this many major scales and uplifting passages. Unlike most black metal, this sounds like Mr. Fog is having the time of his life, rather than being pissed at the world or calling on malignant forces from below. It sounds adventurous rather than threatening. Even the tremolos and shrieks are more thrilling than menacing. Some of the most epic interaction between the guitars and keyboards happen on the aptly-titled, and soaring “Dragons Burning”. There’s a lot of mixing the guitars and keyboards that make up the backbone of Battle Furies 2.017 for an enchanting sound. There’s also some ambient songs that keep the same fantasy aura with a more reserved tone. The adventurous mood and impressive melodies make this worth a listen.
I could see someone getting into this if they enjoyed early …And Oceans, early Dimmu Borgir, or even Bal-Sagoth. This isn’t as pompous or silly as a Bal-Sagoth album, but it has a similar “mystic questing” feeling about it, though it’s played more seriously here by Ewigkeit. What I’m saying is that this should be a good one for people who loved the atmosphere and keyboards of late 90s symphonic black metal. This album is nothing that would have shaken the world up at that time, but it makes for something nice if you want to hear some symphoblack, but Dimmu is too dark, and Bal-Sagoth is too wacky. Battle Furies 2.017 bridges the gap between seriousness and optimism pretty well. It’s got neat, thrilling keyboards and a good guitar presence. Some moments that stand out are the soaring female guest vocals on “Wonder of the Cosmos” and many of the synth passages across the whole album, with “Christendom Falls” having some really pure and epic atmosphere. I’m honestly impressed that James Fogarty did most of this all by himself, this sounds like something that would take a whole band to do, and is pretty solid to boot.
Ewigkeit’s re-recorded Battle Furies 2.017 is a nice piece of melodic symphonic black metal that gets a mystic sound down well. It’s a decent addition to the genre even if it doesn’t quite set the world on fire. It’s lost none of its 90s charm and makes due well with the cleaner, newer production. It’s strangely upbeat for black metal, but it still works and doesn’t sound all that ridiculous, in fact, it sounds decently epic in a way. It’s a good album if you thought albums by other bands, like Stormblast or The Dynamic Gallery of Thoughts were neat.