Whenever I venture into the blistering world of blackened thrash, I tend to go in with not much in terms of expectations other than speed and immense aggression. That’s something that is very natural for a style such as this, but quality is the sort of thing that, obviously, isn’t as common as we’d like. Ever since their debut full-length, Frosthelm has been a name I’ve revered and loved as they brought the style to a new height in my eyes. It’s with much anticipation and excitement that I waited to hear more from Frosthelm ever since that fateful record four years ago, and it’s with “Pyrrhic” that my patience has been greatly rewarded.
Quite literally everything about “The Endless Winter” really grabbed the attention like few others of its kind from the vicious riffs to the cold winter winds that you could feel throughout the entire record. It seems with “Pyrrhic” that Frosthelm has toned down their reliance on blistering riffage and brought the prominence of a harsh North Dakota winter to a much lower degree as we see a more volcanic setting for this album, but that doesn’t take an ounce of potency away from the massive sound that Frosthelm has come to hone even more with these seven tracks. It’s with longer tracks and much more dynamic songwriting that we see Frosthelm approach “Pyrrhic” with a tenacity that’s as intoxicating as it is deadly from start to finish. Whether it be something incredibly organic like “The Sorceress”, a straight ravager like “Serpentine Embrace”, or an ultimate showcase of fiery chaos like the two-part title track, there is very little to not lose yourself in the more you sift through the confines of these seven tracks. It all comes together fucking beautiful to where I knew I was listening to excellence on the first spin, but it’s with each successive listen that Frosthelm grows on me more and more somehow even as “Pyrrhic” has already become an album that I will be screaming the praises of for the rest of the year. And if that’s not the case for many others, then that’s a true crime of untold proportions.
Going into “Pyrrhic”, I already felt that Frosthelm was going to deliver with each track being a new lesson in devastation, but I did my best to not allow my love of “The Endless Winter” to make this seem better than it might’ve been. And after about seventeen listens, I think (I lost track somewhere along the line), I can say with complete confidence that Frosthelm has created yet another monolithic and blistering piece of blackened thrash that’s to tower over the style for the entire year and many others to come as it’s with “Pyrrhic” that we’re given what’s undoubtedly one of the year’s best!
“Pyrrhic” releases on March 23rd!
LISTEN to the single, “The Sorceress”, on Bandcamp here.
LIKE Frosthelm on Facebook here.
FOLLOW Frosthelm on Twitter: @frosthelm