Of all the weird and wonderful bands that have come out of the deepest reaches of the black metal underground over the decades, it’s always a true joy to witness one rise above the masses to become a widely heralded entity that holds nothing back in its craft while still finding adoration at virtually every turn. When I first discovered Gaerea, it was clear that the band was exceptional but few things could have alluded to the unmitigated success that the name would have. Now, four years later with its third full-length album, it’s time to be utterly obliterated again by the band’s talent as they’ve returned to us once more to remind us just how such a meteoric rise was possible in the first place.
Any time a band like this puts out an album, everyone takes notice, and rightfully so! Creations from acts like Gaerea are always reasons to take your time and properly absorb for who’s to know when we will hear from that act next or, even more unlikely, when we will get an effort from a different act that can even hold a candle to such a landmark release. With “Mirage”, Gaerea is undoubtedly three for three. The band’s trajectory has been undeniably skyward since their very first days as an act with every album offering us something new with more layers and more intrigue to make each piece wild successes in every form without compromisation to the band’s image or soul, and that’s only been further reinforced with these eight monolithic tracks. No stone is left unturned in this massive creation as Gaerea never once misses the opportunity to pull their punch in order to achieve maximum effect with all of the riffs, the atmospheres, and the unyielding catharsis all playing massive roles in the very whole of “Mirage” to not only make it another terrific step in the evolution of Gaerea but another performance the likes of which cannot be considered anything less than essential listening for all that 2022 has thrown our way.
This is the definition of a creation that demands more than a single run-through in order to truly experience all that it has to offer, for it’s even after several listens that Gaerea has more than enough secrets to keep drip-feeding you in order to keep the vicious majesty of “Mirage” a steady source of wonder that will likely never truly cease to deliver. Gaerea has yet to let us down since their earliest days, and it’s with all that they bring forward for this release that should leave everybody’s jaws on the floor and hearts aflutter with awe and the purest form of catharsis that we’ve ever seen as the tears roll down our eyes even as Gaerea seek to pummel us into the very earth. Very few bands have ever been able to achieve such glory, but it’s even now that these masters continue to surprise us at every turn.
LISTEN to “Mirage” on Bandcamp here.
LIKE Gaerea on Facebook here.