Djevel - Dodssanger
Aftermath Music
Black Metal
8 songs (47:06)
Release year: 2011
Aftermath Music
Reviewed by Goat

About as Norwegian and mid-90s as you can get, three-piece Djevel (devil) features a member of Koldbrann, an ex-member of Ljå and the vocalist from punk horde Kvertelak. All icy guitar, blastbeats, and acoustic interludes, Dødssanger is perfectly aimed and constructed, and does its job perfectly. It stands out from the crowd due to the songwriting, inspired riffing a la old-school Darkthrone, Burzum and Enslaved and managing to build tormented atmospheric towers with them. Despite the presence of Kvertelak’s frontman there’s very little punk involved in Djevel, the main composer being said ex-Ljå-man Trond Ciakals, the main composer here.

I’m not familiar with Ljå but am pretty impressed by Trond’s work here. His guitar lines seem perfectly suited a certain sort of black metal fan who appreciates a palette of greys and blacks, woven together in tribute to northern darkness and all the other things that put a smile on our miserable faces. It’s nothing that hasn’t been done before, but is damn good in spite of that, the likes of Dvejelheim and Mørkefødt speeding along in a strangely catchy way, turning to strange otherworldly realms towards the end of the latter track which launches into an atmospheric journey continued in Dakvinnenbrant and the rest of the album. The real highlights of the album come towards the end, when the tracks seem to get more desperate and unhinged at the same time as becoming more melodic. Both the eight-minute Vi Malte Verden I Sort and the nine-minute finale of Paktensendeisatanseie have an air of ruthless malice to them, the cold chugging of the former like the ticking of some terrible clock...

The latter, however, is what sealed the deal on this album for me, building up with varied harrowing vocals from yells to groans (all in the band’s native Norwegian) with some very captivating riffs. Despite being so old-school in style, this clearly has a modern twist to it, as seen from the fairly frequent interjected spoken parts and some of the melodies on Paakallelsen, not to mention the clear and modern production that allows for an audible bass without removing the music’s atmospheric qualities. I’d recommend it to any fan of TNBM – yes, you’ve heard it before, but Djevel promise much with this debut that I hope will be fulfilled even more on future releases.

Killing Songs :
Djevelheim, Dvejelheim, Dakvinnenbrant, Paakallelsen, Vi Malte Verden I Sort, Paktensendeisatanseie
Goat quoted 77 / 100
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