Atritas – Where Witches Burnt

Genre: Black Metal

01. Evil Calling (Intro)
02. The Devils Throat
03. Black Sunday
04. Mongrel Monument
05. Thou Shalt Suffer
06. Where Witches Burnt
07. My Mortal Flesh
08. Narrow Refuse
09. I’m the Vanity
10. Last Sheep Smashed

Atritas has quite a big status in the Underground Black Metal scene.

This is not very suprising. Where Witches Burnt is their fifth release, and first full length CD. Then I ask myself: Why do talented bands like Atritas not find a deal with a label? This is truly a shame. I can’t say Black Metal is really my thing, but this was one of the rare moments I was immediately convinced by a Black Metal album. You can already consider this as a big plus.

The sextet plays their very own kind of Melodic Black Metal which reminds me of some of the old work of Dimmu Borgir, Old Man’s Child and Cradle of Filth. The music is a combination of hateful drum blastings, cold melodic guitars and spherical keyboards. The atmosphere is mainly setted by the very clever use of these keyboards. Sometimes they even lean towards an epic and majestic sound. Within the songs, variety is the key. They never indulge in countless repetitions or the same tempo throughout a track but combine heaviness, tensity, speed and very interesting dynamics. Acoustic parts even appear, as in Thou Shalt Suffer.

Now I definitely need to say something about the vocals. They are excellent and a delight for all Black Metal fans. Gier’s vocals are even more extreme than the usual Black Metal vocals. They are some kind of high, hysteric screaming.

If I need to go look for a down point, then I would say the bass line doesn’t really come out. You can hardly hear it at times. But this doesn’t bother me at all when listening. Also, their production could be perfectionised. These are just minor flaws though, because I love the album.

I can conclude by saying the whole album sounds hateful, but really beautiful at the same time. Old Man’s Child was the first Black Metalband to intrigue me, and now Atritas did it again. Thumbs up!


9/10 Points – reviewed by Lyra

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