Tjodalv, the second, SUSPERIA, the second. "Vindication" is the title of the second album and who knows and likes the debut should also have no problems with their second effort. Yet who buys this album only because of the namedropping of "members of DIMMU BORGIR, SATYRICON and OLD MAN'S CHILD" could, just as with the debut, be in for a more or less "bad" surprise.
We still get a mixture from Black, Death, Thrash and also a few more traditional influences, really mixed, not sounding like a loose chain of different elements. And the album also sounds compact, not torn apart by the different sounds, which to some extent also is courtesy of the really brilliant, powerful and clear production, which is more than just remarkable.
Tjodalv's super-precise drumming forms a very good foundation for the rest of the band, to perform the powerful songs, with forceful riffs, nice leads and compared to the debut also more rhythmic and speedy variation. So SUSPERIA put the pedal to the metal, but they also know, where they have to reduce the tempo for the best of the song. Here they break through the undergrowth in best Death/Black/Thrash-manner ("Anguished Scream (For Vengeance)"), then Athera unpacks clean vocals with really heavy, very traditionally rooted Heavy Metal ("Petrified", for me THE highlight on "Vindication" reminds me a little of the brilliant "The Shepherds And The Hounds Of Hell"-album by OBTAINED ENSLAVEMENT), just to hand out mighty riffs on "Dead Man's World", while Athera roughly roars into the mic.
Which had been declared a project at the beginning, at least to me has absolute band-character musically, because they, as surprising as that may sound, have found their own sound, which in combination with the great production and the good songs has a real raison d'Ítre and can stand without the well-known names behind it.