The demand in the Black Metal-genre has risen a lot in the past months and Swedish MÖRK GRYNING (btw Swedish for "dark dawn" - Alex) also have realised this and sent an album of highest level into the champions' race. It is truly breath-taking with which variety the bad boys are approaching this musical sub-genre. From blistering speed to sacral over doomy, stomping, bluesy (!), but always on the highest level MÖRK GRYNING show that with their third album they have reached the peak of the genre.
Just listen to the hyper-brilliant opener "Templars", which unites everything that MÖRK GRYNING stand for in one song. First of all the hyperspeed-drumming, the singing lead-guitar, tons of timing-changes, which never seem to be out of place, deep (!) growl/screech-vocals and great acoustic guitars, fantastic solos and insane double-bass. A song that is complex in the beginning, but despite everything still manages to sound catchy. And I don't even want to start with the hymnic, sublime atmosphere. So to say a paragon for the black genre! Then we get "Ont Blod" ("Bad Blood" - Alex), which is pretty fast and rather typical for the band at the times of their "Tusen År Har Gått" ("Thousand Years Have Gone")-debut. Here again this unique lead-guitar. Very good, but no highlight!
The next amazing song is "The Menace" and starts out with almost the same riff as the previous track. Pretty energetic and a little hectic this song shreds your brain. Great, mean vocals! Then there is a fantastic solo and the song turns into a doomy speed and sacral choirs take over for a short while before the basic riff returns and loosens the brakes again! The original riffing takes up again, then another sacral intermezzo before all hells are set loose again. It's logical that I could not close my mouth anymore! This song is just big! A classic! The title-track cannot really compete with it, but still is remarkable, because MÖRK GRYNING again break out of their rather confined genre! The song is quite doomy and mean, the vocals rather dark, but no Gothic. Don't ask me how to describe it, but let's just call it Doom, OK?
After that we meet "My Friends". Also a rather slow title, with thundering double-bass-drums and a mysric atmosphere. Unique these Swedes! Who gets bored here, well, I cannot help you anymore then! "The Darkness Within" is a hymnic, complex track, which reminds me a little of BORKNAGAR with its sublimity. "Bloodspring Mirage" is a very moody interlude, consisting of romantic acoustic guitars and tension-building strings and kettledrums. It leads into "Forever Unhallowed Preponderance", another up-tempo-smasher, which can convince again and also is almost obligatory for the band. Massive use of blastbeats and mean screeching show that MÖRK GRYNING still acknowledge their roots. The closing "Dödens Skald" ("Poet Of Death" - Alex) is jumping straight at your throat and is rather in the vein of their debut, super-fast, but with this certain elegance that these Northmen bear. The chorus somehow reminds me a little of FINNTROLL, cannot help it. Great!
What else should I say about such a gigantic masterpiece? MÖRK GRYNING are amongst the spearhead of the black guild. I hope that the fans will view this accordingly. If there is something like justice within the Metal-world, then the Swedes should be mentioned in the same breath as DIMMU BORGIR, CRADLE OF FILTH or EMPEROR soon! Because they are easily beaten with this album!