Reviewed: December 2021
Released: 2021, self-released
Reviewer: Demitri Levantis
One thing I love about black metal is its ability to take very calm and content themes such as nature and make them sound delightfully evil. That is very much the case for the new release from UK atmospheric outfit Cistvaen, hailing from the South-West of the country.
In my time in the BM scene, the atmospheric wing has really taken off and these guys, involving experienced musicians whose music CVs involves Edenfall and Mordrake, are no exception. Cistvaen have taken some of the harshest and most melodic of BM and mixed it to cover themes of forests, natural wonderment and the mythologies of the leaves and trees.
What I remember most about this record is the way it goes from the slow and melodic to a faster gallop whilst retaining its atmospheric amazement. Here we see a band whom I could see sharing the stage with other atmospheric greats like Fen or A Forest of Stars.
Another good thing about this EP is how it doesn’t outstay its welcome as has been the case with a lot of albums of this ilk in all the years I’ve enjoyed the genre. “Under the Silent Meadow” is a walk in the woods put to music, offered in the most poetic yet evil form.
Promising is how I’d describe this release as it exhibits the potential of a band who could go on to do many great and impressive things in the near future, so I hope I am speaking the truth here and hope to see Cistvaen live in concert very soon. A very good job all around.