This is a review of a split album between United kingdom's Cruelty's Heart and Frostwork, 2 bands that have been featured before in this zine with the album being released in 2014 by UKEM Records and called "Beyond Bloodied Banners Far And haunted Winters Graven" and we will start off the review with Cruelty's heart which continues their pagan black metal sound.
Their side of the album starts up with tribal drumming and fast raw black metal guitar riffs along with some screams and blast beats which also leads to a mixture of mid paced and fast parts and they also bring in a small amount of melody and death metal growls and you can also hear the bass guitars on their side of the recording and after awhile solos and leads are added into the music along with thrash influences.
As their side of the split continues you can hear some traditional metal melodies being added in along with the vocals taking a more grim approach and after awhile a small amount of clean and acoustic guitar playing is brought into certain sections of the recording and on the last track there is a brief use of melodic pagan choirs.
Cruelty's Heart continue their raw pagan black metal sound they are known for on their side of the split and they also bring in a good amount of melody, thrash and traditional elements to create another great release.
Song lyrics cover Anglo Saxon/Nordic Paganism and Witchcraft, while the production has a very heavy, raw and powerful sound where you can hear all of the musical instruments that are present on their side of the recording.
In my opinion this is another great sounding recording from Cruelty's heart and if you are a fan of pagan black metal, you should check out their side of the split. RECOMMENDED TRACKS INCLUDE "The Witch's Rune" and "The Triumphant Death of Tiw".
Next up is Frostwork a 1 man band which continues his raw and melodic approach to atmospheric black metal.
His side of the split starts up with nature sounds and acoustic guitars which bring a folk music feeling to the recording along with whispers and after the intro the music goes into a more raw and melodic depressive black metal direction along with some powerful sounding bass guitars and after a minute melodic pagan vocals become a part of the music.
As the music continues you can hear a small amount of pagan battle samples being added on one of the tracks before making a return to a more raw and melodic sound on the following track while also getting a bit faster along with blast beats and an atmospheric background and after awhile acoustic guitars make a return to the music.
When we get more into the album there is an acoustic song brought in which also uses melodic pagan chanting and singing and the music gets heavy again on the following song as well as bringing in small trace s of noise music while also keeping around the acoustic guitars along with the last track being all acoustical.
Frostwork show a good amounr of variety with the song s he brings to the recording and you can hear depressive, pagan, fast, raw and melodic elements throughout these songs along with some atmospheric, noise and folk music elements and the sound is very original.
Song lyrics coldness and northern winter themes, while the production has a very strong, powerful and heavy sound where you can hear all of the musical instruments that are present on his side of the recording.
In my opinion this is another great sounding recording from Frostwork and if you are a fan of raw, melodic and atmospheric black metal, you should check out his side of the split. RECOMMENDED TRACKS INCLUDE "Through Frozen Winds And Roots I Spoke" and "Humanity Is Cold".
In conclusion I feel this is a very great sounding split and I would recommend it to all fans of pagan and atmospheric black metal. 8/5 out of 10.