Released: 2006, Napalm Records
“Music from Middle Earth! Feat. The First song ever ‘Mirdautas Vras,’ in the language of the orcs.” My first impulse was to just type the former sentence and then type “SCREW FLANDERS” over and over and over and over again. And that was to be my review for this album. I didn’t, however, because, to be fair, Summoning’s OATH BOUND deserves better than that.
Sonically, we have syth-laced medieval music, with a glass black metal vertebra, and “a relaxed arpeggio style” instrumentation – So more of the same with Summoning. If you liked LET MORTAL HEROES SING YOUR FAME…then you’ll blow a load all over OATH BOUND. It’s a similar album…only everything sounds better…still trebly…but there’s more pomp and majesty (probably due to the better equipment at their disposal).
I’ve always been on the fence with Summoning. I believe they have the capacity to create beautiful soaring passages…but they seem to unceasingly incinerate any sense of the truly epic by influxing their grim / daft black metal yaps. I’m not saying they need to release the LOTR soundtrack…I just want to see them execute their black metal influence in a more appropriate (less silly) way. Silenius and Protector are ambitious nerds…but they aren’t idiots.
For all its evils, OATH BOUND is still serviceable. We do get a sense of hopelessness within a drowning empire. The synth parts are at times – brilliant. And the drums do not hide their mechanical origin – they are cohesive and advance like a victorious horde. OATH BOUND is, if nothing else, bleak. Desperation is felt…and there is something dourly heroic about the whole thing.
However, there’s no escaping the fact we’re dealing with black metal influenced music (nerd)…from ‘middle earth’ (nerd)…with a song called “Mirdautas Vras” (nerd) sung in the dark language of Mordor (NERD).
Conclusion: Summoning has advanced in terms of production…but the previous ills are still abounding. This is an album destined to be played on repeat by twenty something year-olds absorbed in a D&D game, with their disgusting friends, in their mother’s basement. However, it is worth a spin…and Vienna’s Summoning are certainly a band to keep an eye on.