With the precision of a (slow) clockwork Nicklas Rudolfsson belts out RUNEMAGICK albums. “On Funeral Wings“ is the by now seventh album of the Swedish Doom/Death machinery and when I say that they have stayed true to themselves, then I mean that literally, because they still are heavy, slow and menacing, as on the albums before that.
The trio Nicklas Rudolfsson, Emma Karlsson and Daniel Moilanen still lets loose a maelstrom of lava-like Metal, which will grind any resistance to dust. And every time it is amazing that unlike other bands that release albums in a yearly rhythm, they don’t just to a meagre 35 minutes, but give us more than 73 minutes of playing time, as in this case!
Now some might accuse RUNEMAGICK of acting after the “you know one, you know them all“ principle, but they definitely are a band that has found its very own style, which they just refine and trust me, there is more to it than you would expect at superficial listen. The Swedes even have different speeds, slow and very slow and with song lengths of up to ten minutes you could think that this music could get boring quickly and really would only be suited for the absolute freaks.
But you shouldn’t brush them off that easily, because this trio excellently manages to bring in variety into their long chunks of heavy music, even though one might not realise it right away. In earlier reviews I had compared the music of RUNEMAGICK with lava and this is still valid in the year 2004, because who or what ever might try to stand in their way, will be ground down without mercy, opener “Monolithic Death“ right away is a pure Doom steamroller, showing very clear influences by the old Doom bands, but thanks to Nicklas Rudolfsson’s deeeep vocals clearly Doom/Death, but at the same time getting caressed by unexpected melodies, which give everything a different touch again.
“Dragon Of Doom“ then also utilises some foreign sounding guitar parts, which spice things up a bit, spicy lava, so to say, while “Emperor Of The Underworld“ starts out surprisingly fast, before the song gets comfy in mid-tempo and with that is absolutely faster than the RUNEMAGICK average, while “The Doomsday Scythe“ is slow, heavy, brutal, but still melodic, with the harsh vocals of Rudolfsson and a straighter guitar part, which drill through your skull without mercy.
As said before, RUNEMAGICK create a maelstrom of heaviness, which inevitably drags the listener in, you cannot really escape it and you get swallowed whole. A chunk that almost slays you with its darkness and melancholy and still surprises with details. Have to hear it more often, have to like it, I have done so and do, so works. (Online May 6, 2004)