The true highlights in the Black Metal genre get less and less during the past few years, but still a few true fighters of the scene manage to convince with unusual albums. Among these chosen few we maybe also can welcome Norway's ASMEGIN soon, because their debut "Hin Vordende Sod & Sų" in all matters is remarkable.
And the influences that this masterpiece combines are widely spread. So it would be wrong to call ASMEGIN another Nordic Black Metal band and would neither do the variable sound justice. So besides the classical Black and Viking Metal influences we get especially Scandinavian folklore, traditional Heavy Metal or here and there a little grooving Rock part. With this wide spectrum the Northmen never drift off into chaos, but more often than not convince with surprising twists inside the songs.
So furious Black Metal attacks are loosened up by romantic Folk, dark grunting torn apart by shrieks and female angelic voices raised into new spheres by hymnic chants. The number of guest musicians is also remarkable and hints at a not really stressless and calm work in the studio, which makes the professional atmosphere of the album even more surprising. Among others we get Lars Fredrik Froislie (WHITE WILLOW, WOBLER) on the piano, Lars Nedland (BORKNAGAR, SOLEFALD) on vocals and Sareeta (RAM-ZET) on the violin and the female vocal parts. A row of other musicians (Norwegian cither, flute and harp) rounds up this outstanding album and lets it be one of the most interesting albums of this year.
It will be quite difficult to transfer this enormous production also into the live environment, on disc the altogether eleven tracks are flawless. Supported by a very differentiated and still mightily powerful production it will get harder for critics to find weaknesses on "Hin Vordende Sod & Sų". (Online August 5, 2003)