Selvans is a black symphonic folk metal band from Italy. On their latest full length release through the excellent Avantgarde Music, a label I have come to trust for quality underground metal releases, Selvans definitely bring their A game. Lupercalia is the name of an ancient ritual that was meant to purify and drive out evil spirits from the city. I dunno, it sure feels like we're welcoming them in.
The real treat here is all of the great, folky instrumentation: flutes, mandolin, strings all partake in addition to the more traditional Emperor-style symphonics. These all make some great statements in their careful placement within the larger composition. "Hirpi Sorani," in particular, comes to mind with its perfect flute flourishes and mandolin layering that reminded me of the main title track for Silent Hill 3.

But the keyboards pull plenty of weight for themselves. There is a great expanse conveyed through the resulting atmosphere. Each sustained, angelic note inspires a plethora of emotive responses. It's no wonder choices were made at times to pull back all other instrumentation and allow these passages to stand alone. The resulting dynamics can be quite breathtaking.
So what about the metal? I've spent the bulk of my time here highlighting all of the hybrid elements from classical and folk tradition, so where do things get heavy? Be still, my little acolyte, there is still plenty grimness to be found. Vocals are harsh and throaty throughout. I can hear the resulting larynx damage true to black metal tradition. Taake may be the closest comparison. Lyrics are often in what I assume to be Italian, but they are vile enough to make this difficult to surmise. Things really escalate by the time "N.A.F.H." comes to a close.

Meanwhile the guitars and drums definitely do their part to make this an engaging piece of work. Nothing out of the ordinary: varying degrees of tremolo, minor chord picking, blastbeats, d-beat, double bass. What is important in this genre tends to be how it all comes together. In Selvan's case, it does soe quite well. Compositions, despite being quite long, feel conside and well-structured. Melodies are catchy and the rhythms will get you moving.
If you are ready to check this thing out for yourself, it just came out today (10/19/15) and is ready for your consumption below. Digital copies are pretty cheap for purchase as well. I definitely recommend it.

No comments:

Post a Comment