Black metal has always been renowned for having vastly diverse and constantly expanding soundscape that is bigger and much more vibrant than ever before, and I love digging through it to see what I can find. Sometimes, that leads me back to bands I’ve heard before to hear brand new gems I was never expecting. Havukruunu definitely did something special with the album they released back in 2015, and I’ve been wondering what a proper follow-up would look like. Thankfully, I don’t have to wait anymore, and the results are incredibly pleasing.
I’ve always been a fan of folk metal, but have always been really picky about it. Not sure why but that’s just how I am (sue me). Typically, though, pagan metal (essentially black + folk, for those who don’t know) usually goes over well for me, and I feel comfortable in saying that Havukruunu was the band that helped me get into the style. Not only does their newest effort of “Kelle Surut Soi” taste delicious in every way, but it’s a massive step up from what this two-man band has done in the past. Havukruunu really went for the throat with this record, and I mean that in several ways. Yes, this Finnish group definitely didn’t skimp on their black metal sound in terms of quality or versatility, but “Kelle Surut Soi” also showcases plenty of diverse musicianship between these two men that come in perfect harmony to ultimately create mass chaos the likes of which is simply infectious. We get a stunning showcase of acoustics, intense vocals, magnificent rhythms that leave you entranced, and an overall sound of epic proportions that’ll keep you listening to “Kelle Surut Soi” as if you were experiencing a grand tale unfold before your eyes. Scant few bands can even come close to doing something like that with a record, but Havukruunu really hit the nail right on the fucking head with this fabulous piece.
There may be dozens and dozens of pagan metal albums that come out every single month of every single year, but somehow Havukruunnu manages to stay ahead of the curve as their sound is increasingly stunning, ever evolving, and always badass. “Kelle Surut Soi” is an achievement that this band should absolutely be proud of, and is something that every single fan of the style should experience. Otherwise, you’re missing out on something you’ll never want to be apart from.
LISTEN to “Kelle Surut Soi” on Bandcamp here.
LIKE Havukruunu on Facebook here.