Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Kurgan - ...And Green Grasses are Freezing Slowly (2008)

I'm always amused by bands that identify themselves by Name (country of origin), it is especially great when the name comes from Tolkien. Kurgan doesn't come out of any Tolkien works that I know, but still it was with great surprise that I found they were the only metal band with the name according to Metal-Archives. ...And Green Grasses are Freezing Slowly is their first full length release, a pagan black album, and one of my favorites this year.

It seems to me that if you have a derivative name you should also identify what media you took it from in parenthesis as well. So this band would presumably look like Kurgan (Ukr) (Clancy Brown). Wikipedia tells me that a kurgan is a Russian burial mound and an airport. I don't speak whatever language they do, so I couldn't tell you which is the correct influence.

The songs are short though and rightly so; they don't overstay their welcome, but feature plenty of catchy synth hooks. While not as masterful as say Oath Bound, I've found myself humming a number of these songs. I can't remember if that's bullshit or not for a black metal album.

There's hardly a weak track on the album. Songs like “Rain from Svarga” and “And Filth Has Come of the Earth” are obvious stand outs with the aforementioned synth hooks, but both songs have solid riffs to back it up. The vocals are more on the guttural side of black vocals and the drumming while solid is pretty standard.

Its not an album with a whole lot of meat to it, which is to say it only takes a few listens to digest everything. You'll probably be done with it in a week or two, but I figure there isn't enough time in the day to devote more than that to any one album and this one pays off right up front and manages to stay enjoyable a few months later.

Verdict: Win


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