Horna - Kuoleman Kirjo (2020)


Unleashing hellish fury upon the world, today we have Horna’s latest opus “Kuoleman Kirjo”. With nearly 70 minutes of crushing music, this is THE Black Metal release to buy in 2020. For those uninitiated, this Finnish battalion has been delivering sweeping blows of BM brutality over the years and this release is no exception. Filled with perfectly layered rudimentary atmospherics and vicious guitar work, Shatraug and company once more seize the BM throne.

The sheer violence of “Saatanan Viha” is the first indicator of what is to come in this release. Delivering sweeping aural violence, the guitars/drums/vocals combo signal for complete destruction. Completely riding on their signature in-your-face approach, tracks like “Elegia”, “Uneton”, and “Sydänkuoro” lay waste to listeners as crafty tempo changes and crushing drum patterns create a whirlwind dissonant experience.

Showcasing maturity and sinister restraint, melodic passages baked into tracks like “Elävänä, Kuolleena” and “Haudattujen Tähtien Yönä” nicely shake things up and create a more well rounded experience that shows the band’s evolution. However, all fans of the band mostly expect devastating tracks like “Rakas Kuu” and “Mustat Vuodet” that are just relentless and full of extreme brutality. Interesting elements like the creepy clean vocal arrangements on “Unohtumaton” allow the band to spice up their sound and craft a truly demonic atmosphere.

As the eerie “Ota Minut Vastaan” creates a very ritualistic vibe, Horna manages to showcase maturity while delivering their raw and unrivaled brutality. We are particularly impressed by how this release constantly shakes things up to stay engaging and far from linear, a very uncommon feat in the genre. If you are a Black Metal aficionado, you cannot afford to miss out on the most punishing and yet polished release of 2020.

Band: Horna Album: Kuoleman Kirjo

Label: World Terror Committee

Release: December 8th, 2020

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Genre: Black Metal

Country: Finland

Rating: 97/100

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