Forlesen - Black Terrain (2022)


After blowing us away with their 2020 debut “Hierophant Violent”, Forlesen is back for more with a poignant sophomore release titled “Black Terrain”. Clocking in at nearly 60 minutes of crushing and yet experimental music, this album perfectly blends elements of Ambient music and Doom/Black Metal to create a massive slab of enigmatic atmospheric brilliance. Better digested after more than a dozen spins, this release is a killer follow-up to their antics.

The release opens with the 19-minute behemoth “Strega” and its slow burning approach, flanking distorted guitars with crafty vocal arrangements and additional subtle instrumentation. The solemn combination of male and female vocals alongside a super slow tempo creates a very unique and devastating aura as more colorful guitar leads are introduced. The song reaches an excellent climax and we will definitely not ruin it for listeners here.

As the album title track rolls in, we are back into Ambient territories mixed in with hypnotic vocal arrangements that suddenly progress to very unsettling minimalistic riffs. The whole pace of this track is quite engaging and nicely changes the pace of things. The most aggressive track in this release has to be the hellish “Harrowed Earth” and its punishing riffing/drumming alongside ravaging shrieks. While this piece is quite aggressive, there is more than meets the ear as the song progresses into Doomier and more hypnotic territories.

Closing the release we have “Saturnine” and its 18-minute rollercoaster ride of Ambient-meets-Doom onslaughts, perfectly adorned with more lush vocal arrangements. Overall, “Black Terrain” is a crushing release that while not all ‘full-blast aggression’, it is aurally abusive with its tempo changes, varied instrumentation, and commanding use of powerful distorted guitars and leads when needed. If you liked the band’s debut release, this is a very nice progression of their craft to further incorporate more uniques into their sound.

Bands: Forlesen Album: Black Terrain

Label: I, Voidhanger Records

Release: October 28th, 2022

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Genre: Ambient/Doom/Black Metal

Country: USA

Rating: 93/100

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