Sólstafir - Í Blóði og Anda (reissue)
Season Of Mist
Post-Black/Progressive Metal
9 songs (56'44'')
Release year: 2013
Season Of Mist
Reviewed by Jared

Sometimes there comes along a band that takes me awhile to absorb. No other band made me feel this way more than Sólstafir. Delving more into their primitive roots, their debut album Í Blóði og Anda was one of the more difficult pieces I have had the opportunity to review this year. This, "rather forgotten album", settles way back before that had a more proficient sound in my opinion with such albums that come to mind like their latest in 2011, Svartir Sandar. Even before their latest album, they delivered some magnificent pieces, and their debut was located at the beginning of greatness to come.

Their post-black metal friendly sound is one that comes off with a rock tuned atmosphere on their debut. The music is extremely solid, however I had the worst of times getting into performance of the vocals. This is really the only thing I found “cringe worthy” during my experience. The higher pitched screaming came off a bit punk metal style for my taste, but I was able to look past this and enjoy some pretty fantastic musicianship. Sólstafir’s zany chords and unusual black metal rock sound is one hell of a journey from start to finish. Undir Jokli is the first track, and the chords couldn’t sound more bizarre, yet beautiful at moments. It was extremely difficult to get into due to the vocals, but once you look past them, the music is the biggest thing to shine. The self-titled track, I Blodi og Anda, has some intense blast beating, but chords have this crazy rock driven attitude that makes the album fun.

My absolute favorite song on the album came very early entitled, The Underworld Song. This is where the guitar chords became extremely catchy and dare I say very powerful and overtaking. Probably one of the main reasons this song stood out for me was the absence of a lot of vocals. The album does slowdown from time to time, especially with great songs like 2000 Ár that eliminate some of the distortion a bit to get cleaner and more simple. Some of the slower moments on the album really stole the show for me, especially when the album finally reached towards its epic end.

The final two tracks, Í Víking and Árstíðir Dauðans, get a bit more atmospheric than the rest. Í Víking begins this way, with some beautiful piano and clean guitar work. It’s a nine minute song that shows that even during the beginning roots of Sólstafir, they had some amazing work ahead of themselves, especially since it showed clearly on their debut album. The song is completely instrumental, which easily grabbed my attention easily. It has a sort of Viking metal feel, as the song’s title would give away. The slow pounding drums and the slower battle cries of the guitars just steal the show in such an amazing fashion. The last track is no different. Árstíðir Dauðans is the most atmospheric of all the pieces, and gets very dark with the keyboards. The guitar chords end on the album on a very powerful note that is hard to forget.

Sólstafir’s debut album is a piece that took me a while to get into, mainly because the vocals, but hidden deep in this album there are some unforgettable moments to be heard. Songs like Ei Við Munum Iðrast, where a graceful yet melancholic piano halts all the madness from the extreme frenzy of the guitars, stood out big time on the album. For fans of Sólstafir, I highly recommend digging deep into the earliest roots of the band with their debut.

Killing Songs :
The Underworld Song, 2000 Ár, Ei Við Munum Iðrast, Í Víking, Árstíðir Dauðans
Jared quoted 72 / 100
Other albums by Sólstafir that we have reviewed:
Sólstafir - Ótta reviewed by Jared and quoted 78 / 100
Sólstafir - Svartir Sandar reviewed by Jaime and quoted 81 / 100
Sólstafir - Kold reviewed by Charles and quoted 83 / 100
Sólstafir - Masterpiece Of Bitterness reviewed by Misha and quoted 80 / 100
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