Show Me Wolves - The World They Took Over - (8.5/10)
Published on January 10, 2016
In comparison to some parts of the world, there are just a few active metal bands in the cold of Iceland. However, there are some great musicians and albums being released from the home of more popular artists like Sigur Ros and Bjork. In the last few years, the rise of bands such as Solstafir and Mispyrming have given the heavier scene a bit more attention, and now Show Me Wolves is here to gain even more eyes on the Icelandic brand. Coming with their second album, The World They Took Over via Merdumgiriz, the one-man progressive black metal act is sure to turn some heads and have a very promising 2016.
Even from the opening intro track, it is clear that there will be something to pay attention to, and the album will not simply be a rehash of tried and true forms of second wave black metal or just old school worship in general. Certainly there are plenty of other influences here, and they manage to show themselves in very interesting ways throughout the 38 minute run-time. The sharp and sometimes atonal lead work combines well with the changing riffs and overall tempo changes on each track. The drumming is quite impressive as well, and the bass is a bit thin on the album, but the rest of the musicianship makes up for it very well. Vocally, the project consists of a higher and mid-range scream, and the delivery is something that comes across as a little different and very intriguing.
The songwriting on The World They Took Over is definitely a major check in the plus column, with each piece having plenty of its own ideas and being able to create some emotion with the listener. Whether it be the faster sections and more aggressive approach (especially in the fantastic title track) or the slower and more ambient sections in a track like “Exit The Realm Of The Living”, Show Me Wolves is able to weave into various tempos and feelings with great ease. The production is appropriate as well, sounding pretty raw and natural, while still being able to capture the essence of the songs and not allow much to get lost in translation. All together, the performance shows as something very commendable by a still fairly young act.
After what seems like an all too brief 38 or so minutes, the album leaves you wanting more, which is a great compliment. The record feels complete, and doesn’t seem to drag or feel bloated, and yet there are so many catchy riffs, vocal lines, or just generally impressive playing and weirdness in some senses going on that you can’t help but want more. With their second full-length, Show Me Wolves has shown itself to be a very capable act (no pun intended), and one that will hopefully get seated along some of the other “bigger” names from the area. 2016 is off to a great start for sure if more albums like The World They Took Over are waiting for us.