Craft - White Noise and Black Metal
Season Of Mist
Black Metal
8 songs (42:18)
Release year: 2018
Season Of Mist
Reviewed by Goat

My review of Craft's 2011 album Void ended by saying "Craft taking six years to release their next album would be a colossal shame" so it's probably my fault that the band have waited nearly seven years before springing White Noise and Black Metal on us! Still one of the better examples of post-Darkthrone black metal out there with their always intelligent but always headbangable riffs and songcraft, Craft seem to enjoy keeping us waiting for each apocalyptic blast, and yet the wait is always worth it. Only their fifth album since forming (as Nocta) in 1994, this isn't quite the leftfield turn that the deceptively modernist title would suggest after previous blunt declarations of intent like Total Soul Rape and Fuck the Universe!

Indeed, it's very much a continuation of the band's sound, intense, riff-driven yet atmospheric black metal that reveals more of itself with each listen. Opener The Cosmic Sphere Falls is a torrent of blackened gold, setting a dark atmosphere immediately with almost arpeggio riffing behind a wall of noise, soon slowing down to push home the gloom. That gloom is intensified by the following Again, a chugging but intense pounder that has you nodding along to its downright bouncy rhythm guitar even as background riffs summon up dark spirits, the latter part of the track shooting off into a hypnotic void. Impressively, that intensity and hypnotic skill never leaves, even as the band move through the likes of the speedy Undone, which simply rockets through its six-minute-plus length, and the slower, doom metal tempo of much of Tragedy of Pointless Games, which gives a greater emphasis to melodic guitar leads yet still sounds like it's from the mid nineties.

Spiritually, Craft are still very much of that era, despite their strong black n'roll side which leads to the seriously rocking blackthrash of Darkness Falls and crops up as a vital part of their DNA elsewhere, not least in the otherwise grim-faced groove of instrumental Crimson. Yet the speedy blasting that opens Shadow is equally part of the backbone of the band, a relentless torrent of sound and fury that envelops the listener, and what makes Craft so expert is how well they incorporate all these various facets. Individually, sure, nothing here is exactly original or anything that any well-heeled black metalhead won't have heard before, but the unified sound that Craft present is killer and enough to appeal despite that. Another strong showing, perhaps not quite good as Void or enough to last the inevitable eight years on your playlist until new material shows up, White Noise and Black Metal is nonetheless well worth your time.

Killing Songs :
Again, Undone, Darkness Falls, Shadow
Goat quoted 78 / 100
Other albums by Craft that we have reviewed:
Craft - Void reviewed by Goat and quoted 80 / 100
Craft - Fuck the Universe reviewed by Aaron and quoted 53 / 100
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