Thursday, October 20, 2016

Netherbird - Pillars Of The Sky (2016)

For some odd reason, the Swedish black metal act then decided to release another single and this is where I begin to get just a little heated. The record releases on the 28th, but this single released on September 30th. They couldn't wait to just release the album? What's more, is that while we have another on-album cut in “Pillars Of The Sky”, (which sounds more like a folk-tinged melodic death than black metal, think Insomnium) we also have “Brazen Splendour.” Just like it's partner “Sculptors and Spectres” it will not be on the album either. I've also checked online and can't find any version of the disc where these songs would be added. Additionally, “Brazen Splendour” is a very strong song. I like it much more than the cut this single is named after. “Pillars Of The Sky” was a bit slow for me, but this cut is thundering, pounding and full of fine folk influence. It reminds me of early Amon Amarth, when they actually still took some folk and black metal influence. There was absolutely no excuse to not put a track this awesome on the full-length disc. It's not even on the vinyl. Wow, I'm just very disappointed. I guess when The Grander Voyage comes out, you can go pick up that one and then check out these other two tracks on YouTube or something.

According to what I've seen from Metal Archives, the length of the forthcoming is only around forty-two minutes. Adding both of these extra cuts will only increase the playing time by a mere eleven minutes. So there was definitely enough room for them on The Grander Voyage. Don't get me wrong, I don't want to sound “entitled” or anything like that, but I do feel that when a band records an album, they should just release everything on the forthcoming disc. Usually, there are at least special or limited edition versions of a CD where the bonus tracks are added to the performance. In this case, The Grander Voyage would have only benefitted from that. As I stated, I didn't care much for “Pillars Of The Sky” but “Brazen Splendour” is definitely one of my favorite songs in this genre, in quite a while. I played it twice in a row, that's just how good it was. So if we look at this in a reviewer's perspective, I would probably have given the full-length a better score if these cuts were added to it. “Windwards” was a strong song, I liked it quite a bit. Yet as I'll say again, I wasn't all that pleased with the main cut here and they should have just thrown it out and called the single “Brazen Splendour.” To be honest, if the band had released “Windwards” with “Pillars Of The Sky” as a secondary cut, that would have been fine. Then right before the album released, “Brazen Splendour” could have packaged with “Sculptors and Spectres” as a secondary cut, allowing people the opportunity to purchase the bonus tracks as a whole.

The single is only two dollars, so it wouldn't have been a bad price for the bonus cuts, if it had been marketed that way. In any case, you can pick it up and listen to “Brazen Splendour” as many times as you like. I was reminded of Once Sent From The Golden Hall and believe me, that's more than enough sometimes.

(2 Tracks, 12:00)


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