Released: 2015, Moribund Records
Reviewer: Metal-Rules.com UK Team
Between The Fog And Shadows is the 19th album from one man black metal band Vardan. Yes, that's 19 albums and one man. One very busy man. Where does it all come from?
The album's name suggests a doomier take on the genre. As the first track opens the bass guitar gives the music a depressive vibe. As the track progresses it feels as though it is bordering on the territory of goth rock, and the subtle synths and atmospheres give it a darkwave feel. The guitars are obscure, distorted and very low in the mix. It's like there are two different things going on and I don't know which to tune into. The slow and repetitive structure creates a dirge like effect, adding that brooding touch to the music.
The second track “Solitary Death of a Forest Spirit” also has a gothic vibe, with the bass and guitar tone giving a Cure like feeling. Before long the distorted guitars are introduced and I don't know what to tune into. The musical style is hard to pinpoint, and in my opinion straddles a territory somewhere between post-black and gothic rock, which of course for me is a good thing. The basslines could definitely be goth. Again, the soft synthesizers at the end add a really nice touch and bring about an almost Clan of Xymox feeling. Dark, yet soft and enshrouding.
Coming in at over 19 minutes, the final track is a long and brooding affair, treading the same path with its sombre bass and introspective atmosphere. All in all, it's very repetitive, but not in a bad way. It's supposed to be that way and I guess it works. This album is all about the atmosphere, and that aspect is done very well.