Dark Funeral – Where Shadows Forever Reign

Band – Dark Funeral

Album – Where Shadows Forever Reign

Country of Origin – Sweden

Genre – Black Metal

Release Date – June 3rd, 2016

Label – Century Media Records

Author – Hayduke X

Have you ever felt like burning the world down, but have decided not too, since you can’t find an appropriate soundtrack for Armageddon?  Well, Dark Funeral has you covered.  Where Shadows Reign Forever is less the story of some distant other time and place and more the spark that sets of the nihilist flame of anti-human destruction.  This album is angry, hateful, and evil, and pulls this off with a sense of purpose – the purpose being eternal destruction.  Imagine flames hailing down from the blackest of skies while putrid, festering lava flows consume the last vestiges of modern society.  Black winged creatures swarm the few remaining humans, driving them towards the darkest of ends.  Sounds like fun?  No?  Well, really it is.

Dark Funeral have created a truly engaging black metal album.  Founding member Lord Ahriman along with Chaq Mol use their guitars to take you down the wormhole with eloquently paced blackened guitar riffs, wrapping in and around each other to drag you through the dark essence of their album.  You can almost feel the barbs of the tremolo picking as it hooks you into the dark realm these blackened beasts populate.  Though Dominators drums are back in the mix, they live up to the name.  The pace he sets provides solid footing while the blasts he peppers the track with pummel your senses, darken your view, steal your hope.  Heljarmadr provides the voice of evisceration.  His take on black metal vocals is solid and refreshing.  Instead of serving as only another instruments, his rasping yell provides a clarity which allows you to fully decipher the lyrics of doom he spews forth.

Alternately raging and punishing, Where Shadows Reign Forever is a generally mid-paced orthodox black metal album worthy of entry into the pantheon.  Though both the vocals and production have more clarity than much “Trve Cvlt” black metal, the theme clearly fits.  The composition is both solid and diverse.  There really isn’t a weak song on the album, though there isn’t really a stand out track either.  My take on this one is that it is a must have for black metal fiends and fans.  For those looking for an entry point into the genre, this is a solid place to start.  However, if you don’t like black metal, this album doesn’t burst out of those bounds enough to be worthy of consideration.  Dark Funeral have created an album that will be in regular rotation for me (a black metal fan – overall it’s my favorite metal genre), but doesn’t transcend the genre enough for a casual listener.

Rating – 3.5/5