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Album Reviews : The Spirit – Sounds from The Vortex

By on October 12, 2018

This has been such an incredible year for music and it just keeps getting better and better. One of the latest bands to garner the attention and support of many is the German quartet The Spirit, a blackened melodic band that has truly blown me away with a re-release of their debut album “Sounds from the Vortex”.

The album begins on an extremely strong and rather hypnotic note with an absolutely captivating intro with atmospheric vibes, and buzzing guitars. It gives off an ominous and eerie vibe with that single riff holding your ears captive. This title track instrumental seems to be the calm before the storm as, without warning or a breather, the album erupts into the sounds of “Cosmic Fear”, a track that features intense guitar melodies and steps deeper into the realms of black metal. A complete aural assault from the start, it’s undertones of melody coupled with, thick, fat bass lines that will swallow you whole, brilliant mid-paced tempo and vocals that will send chills down your spine, this is undoubtedly one of the best tracks on the album and one that showcases the band’s versatility and the intricacy of their writing.

There is not a single moment on this album where the band lets up and gives the listener a breather; “The Clouds of Damnation” is one of my favourites off this record – it has a beautiful melodic undertone throughout that the band makes work so perfectly with black metal. The lyrics seem to convey and imply something very emotional, a lot of gloom and despair can be sense in every track but with that added little sliver of hope when solos like the one in this track come in and those otherworldly little sections of melody. What’s more is that it is seven minutes of really gripping music, as if The Spirit is telling you an ancient tale.

“Cross the Bridge to Eternity” begins with a serene arpeggio and a really moving atmospheric vibe before it leads into blast beats, heavy riffs and distortion. The production is so crisp and perfect, no one instrument overpowers the others; the vocals really come through here making it one of the catchiest tracks on the album and one that will definitely get you moving. Following this comes the thunderous sounds of “Illuminate the Night Sky” which begins with a really melancholic intro but erupts into an absolute beast of a track. It’s chaotic, the vocals guided so perfectly by massive riffs and drums that really add a tremendous rush. There’s a beautiful little melodic interlude of sorts that allows you to process before the track moves into a mid-tempo, black metal end. It’s so fascinating how varied this band can be within their own style and niche of music. They maintain the flow of their sound dynamic throughout the album; not one dull moment!

While this track is upbeat and draws you in with its darker mood, “The Great Mortality” will captivate you with a more morose soundscape, but only just. This doesn’t last long before this track too leads into a relentless, groove-laden track. The final song “Fields of the Unknown” establishes just how magnificent this album is and the sheer genius behind the artistry of The Spirit. It is flawless in my opinion; there is nothing here that can be faulted or considered weak.

These mysterious metallers from Saarbrucken are truly a breath of fresh air; there is something very gripping about their music and this album that sort of takes over when you’re listening to it. My only gripe with this whole release is that it’s too short. It’s a solid effort from a band that is only one album old and I’m hopeful that we hear more from The Spirit sooner rather than later.

Band: The Spirit
Album: Sounds from the Vortex
Year: 2018
Genre: Black Metal
Label: Nuclear Blast Records
Origin: Germany
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About

Prarthana is a vegan, Indo-Aussie, heavy music addict, fluent in sarcasm and metal. Traveling is an obsession as she enjoys taking in the history of various countries and following her favorite bands. She's either eating, teaching grammar or learning an instrument, when not occupied with windmilling in the faces of other humans.