Totengefluster – “Im Nebel der Verganglichkeit” Album Review (black metal)

Im Nebel der Verganglichkeit

The most fierce of storms rips through the Black Forest of Germany.  The trees turn to icicles and the wind carries the snow in blinding conditions.  Indeed….

Totengefluster has just delivered their newest release, Im Nebel der Verganglichkeit (In the Fog of Decay)

Never have I seen a black metal band so perfectly combine stunning aesthetic appearance with musical craftsmanship.  From the music to the artwork to the over-all presentation….   Totengefluster is a band that cares about every single detail in their artwork, promotional materials, performances and most importantly, their music.  Speaking of which…..

Tracks like “Ein Spiegel der nur Lugen speit” are examples of how a band can perfectly blend time changes with symphonic backgrounds and killer breaks; specifically at 1:32 and on…  This is proof you don’t have to play 1000 miles per hour to make people aware that you are the strongest band on the planet.  It’s like target practice.  Is it better to aim for the center with 5 bullets or shoot near the target with too many bullets?  “Von purpurm bluhender Dammer” is another example of that.  Furthermore, “Von purpurm..” also shows as all the tracks do, it’s more important to punch you in the gut and not necessarily melt your brain – though Totengefluster can do that as well.  The end of that track is perfect with the orchestration behind the riffs and the double-bass.  These tracks all show balance; with lightning-fast tremolo picking and blast beats but with killer breaks – when the symphonic element becomes more prominent but retains the spirit and power of the song.  I could name song after song, but they pretty much all do this.  “One With the Void” starts off as a melancholic, doom-like track but then develops with sweeping melodic guitar and double bass.

The thing about this album is that often the most power is constructed by simple structures but then builds with the harmonies of the guitars and orchestration in the background.  Again, you don’t have to be over-complex to retain power and brutality.

It’s an extraordinarily rare occasion for a black metal song to give me goosebumps, but I’ll be damned if “Creatio Ex Nihilo” didn’t do just that…vicious vocal strikes, the bell and synth background, the transitions from tremolo picking to slow-riffing, the guitar harmonies.  Bloody incredible and memorable.

I HATE having to draw comparisons in writing like this, especially when the band sticks out above the rest.  But again, it’s almost a necessary evil.  Because you want people to notice and often they need to be familiar with something else first, especially when there are floods of bands, good and bad.  But let’s just say that Im Nebel der Verganglichkeit is the equal of Cradle of Filth’s Cruelty…  or Dimmu Borgir’s Enthrone Darkness…  

Im Nebel der Verganglichkeit represents everything a symphonic black metal band should be.  It further proves my argument that the German black metal scene is so criminally underrated and in most cases blows away the Scandinavian bands.

Stunning.  Majestic.  Cold.  Perfect.  11/10

Im Nebel der Verganglichkeit is available in a digipack format with a 24 page booklet.  There is also an incredibly stunning Limited Boxset Edition which includes the CD, double sided poster, art book, handmade box, silver necklace, postcards and sticker.

Their webshop also has a ton of other killer items including their first album, Vom Seelensterben.  It’s hard to believe that this band is doing this without the help of a label.  It’s almost unheard of these days.  So go support this great German black metal band directly through their website.


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