Vîrstele Pămîntului by Negură Bunget (Code 666 Records/Aural Music)
Last year, the classic lineup of Negură Bunget completed Măiestrit a re-imagining of an earlier work entitled Măiastru Sfetnic. This would be the last time the trio would work together, as the old irreconcilable differences pretty much tore the band apart. All that remained from the original lineup was drummer Negru – and instead of languishing in utter obscurity, Negru went ahead and assembled a whole new membership of musicians. Judging by what’s heard on their latest offering Vîrstele Pămîntului, a true renaissance has begun – a melding of like-minded individuals coming up with a work of dark art that is absolutely staggering in scope. Based out of the historic and mysterious country known as Romania, there is much darkness and intrigue to be found within the nine gripping compositions.
Translated as “The Ages Of The Land/Earth,” Vîrstele Pămîntului is an album about embracing your destiny, and even though it’s recorded in their native language, there is no denying the power and passion the songs maintain. Starting off with the haunting pan whistle refrains of Pamint, the masterworks are simply wondrous to behold. Bringing the traveler into the mystical world of Transylvania, Negură Bunget manage to send one on a spiritual journey of sound tapestries that are grand and majestic. Progressive without being pretentious, calling what Negură Bunget achieves “Black Metal” (or any confining label at all) is only simplifying the overall listening experience.
Those into the complex, visionary work from the Negură Bunget of yore will not be disappointed. Vîrstele Pămîntului is an epic that stands an impressive continuation of the band’s musical journey. From the impassioned strains of Dacia Hiperboreana to the somber otherworldly melodies of Întoarcerea Amurgului, Vîrstele Pămîntului is bound to become a favorite for those who demand to be challenged and enlightened by their own personal musical selections.
There is plenty is celebrate about with Negură Bunget in the year 2010 – and with Vîrstele Pămîntului, the newly revamped band has delivered an awe-inspiring masterpiece cementing their already glorious legacy.
The Negură Bunget collective for this new and wondrous age includes Ageru Pamintului – vocals, percussions, plus folk / archaic instruments, Inia Dinia on keyboards, Corb on vocals and guitars, Spin on guitars, Gadinet in bass, and of course the enigmatic Negru on drums, percussion, and archaic instruments. A significant work of dark artistry from the metal underground.
(Review by Kenneth Morton)
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