Hiverna are a band from Quebec, Canada that plays a raw and melodic form of black metal with elements of folk music and this is a review of their self released 2014 album "II. Macabre".
Flutes start off the album bringing a medieval folk music feeling to the album before going into a more heavy and melodic direction along with some solos and leads and then the music speeds up a bit and adds in some blast beats before slowing down again and adding in grim black metal screams and the flutes also mix in with the heavier parts throughout the album and the band also brings in a mixture of slow, mid paced and fast parts as well as always having a melodic atmosphere in each of the tracks.
A good amount of the faster riffing brings in a great amount of raw black metal elements in the musical sound and the vocals also bring in a mixture of grim and high pitched screams and on the later tracks acoustic guitars are added into certain sections of the recording which also enhances the folk music elements the band adds into their musical style while the main focus remains on a grim, raw and melodic black metal sound.
As the album progresses the music starts getting more atmospheric and the bass guitars also start making a very powerful presence in the musical sound and you can also hear a bit of pagan black metal in the music at times as well as a brief use of spoken word parts being utilized on a couple of the tracks and there are a lot of epic qualities in the last half of the album along with a couple of instrumentals and a couple of the tracks also go pass the 6 minute limit and the last song also has a slight classical music feeling being invoked.
Hiverna shows on this album that a band can still create a very raw, fast and melodic style of music with the flute being one of the main instruments of the band and while this band has a good amount of folk music in them and have been labeled a folk metal band by some people I feel their style is a lot more close to black metal on this recording, the production has a very dark, raw and heavy sound while the lyrics are written mostly in French and cover nature, human and lucidity.
In my opinion Hiverna are a very great sounding raw and melodic black/folk metal band and if you are a fan of this musical genre, you should check out this album. RECOMMENDED TRACKS INCLUDE "Boreal" "Sang" "Hiverna" and "Ages". 8/5 out of 10.