Released: 2015, Arachnophobia Records
Reviewer: Metal-Rules.com UK Team
Grim or not, grab that muse and hold onto it boys. Muses can be difficult to keep around. Keep buggering off and just when you wonder if they’re ever coming back or if you should start putting their things in cardboard boxes they saunter through the door to your sobbing relief. If you believe in that sort of thing that is. A grim muse though, artistic inspiration found in doubt, disillusion, all that misery, that’s not heard to believe in. Turn on the news. Read the papers. It’s all there.
Anyway, so THE GRIM MUSE is the third album by Polish five-piece In Twilight’s Embrace. Coming at the ten year point in the band’s career, it’s an impressive lot, blackened death metal with mid-level growling and melodic flourishes. Which sounds like you’ll have heard it all before, but since when did easy to grasp terms paint the whole picture. You should know better by now. That’s not to entirely skirt around the fact that 11 rounds of pummeling leaves you unable to feel every blow, but as closer ‘The Becoming’ (because why not start at the end)demonstrates there’s plenty of complexity as well. Seven minutes of thrashy gallop to gently picked notes and big build drums to pauses and blast vocals is not to be sniffed at.
‘No’ starts out at least as a quiet moment in the swirling maelstrom. That is until those invisible walls collapse and the utterly relentless drums come pouring back over the top. It’s one of two tracks featuring At The Gates’ Tomas Lindberg in guest spot, the other being title track ‘The Grim Muse’ which follows straight after. And might even be a touch better.
Other guests include Rambo (Bloodthirst), on the wild-ranging ‘A Wolf I Am’ and Paweł Bartulewicz (The Dead Goats), who takes a less impressive turn on ‘The Fullmoon Strain’. And ending back near the start ‘Der Hellseher (I Have A Dream)’ has a groove-y undertone that will get inside your head, whilst serving as a playground for the guitars.
At least whilst the world is going to shit we have stuff like THE GRIM MUSE to take comfort in. It may not be ‘nice’ exactly, but it’s about right.
Review by Kirsty Birkett-Stubbs