Every so often, I get the absolute luxury of receiving an album that cannot be considered as anything other than a damn good fun time. Metal is a style that’s more than befitting of serious content made for serious listeners, but, every now and then, it’s fantastic to just throw all seriousness in the fucking can and just have fun. Folk metal is increasingly a style that becomes a breeding ground for those exact conditions, and going into their second full-length album, it’s clear that Zmey Gorynich took the concept to another level.
Now, that’s not to say that what’s done here in this album is greatly exaggerated in certain areas or even downright moronic, but it’s very clear that Zmey Gorynich wanted to have a good time when crafting their music and it’s almost the most obvious in the styles at play here. I’ve never once thought of what would occur if you blend the completely different worlds of deathcore and folk metal together into one pot just to see what would happen, but after listening to “Devilish Dances” I’m surprised to want more of it! With only three tracks out of twelve crossing the 4-minute mark, Zmey Gorynich keeps everything short and simple but most importantly fun (I hope the theme is obvious at this point) as this incredibly weird mixture works amazingly well in this execution despite all the odds being against Zmey Gorynich. It’s all just as hard-hitting as it is joyous in every minute with their not being a single element from one minute to the next that sounds exactly the same as any other which quickly allows “Devilish Dances” to snowball into an album that’s beyond unique with a one of a kind sound that most of us have likely never heard of, and that’s not even taking into account the terrific musicianship, the excellent use of intensity, all the best tropes getting time in the spotlight, every member of the band having their own moment of grandeur, and with every single track being no less than striking in even its humblest of times. Zmey Gorynich has had a true stroke of wondrous talent when making “Devilish Dances”, and it shows in every note that graces this work in ways that my words can only touch on their true glory.
Russian folk metal has only been getting better and better with each passing year, and if this isn’t a clear sign of that then I feel sorry for you because this is something that is no less than striking in just about every way and Zmey Gorynich should be proud of what they’ve made. “Devilish Dances” has flavors for everyone of all kinds of styles, and it’s something that’s going to be spicing up my listening habits for some time.
LISTEN to “Devilish Dances” on Bandcamp here.
LIKE Zmey Gorynich on Facebook here.