Dark Forest – Ridge & Furrow

Spread the metal:

Reviewed: August 1, 2022
Released: September 30, 2022, Cruz del Sur Music
Rating: 5/5
Reviewer: The Elitist Metalhead

England’s DARK FOREST play an interesting style of folk inspired power metal that also has a late 70s proto metal feel to it as well. The lyrical concepts are usually mythical and based on the legends and history of the part of England they call home. Since forming twenty years ago they have released five full length albums. Ridge & Furrow will be their fourth EP and while this may be just an EP, it plays almost as long as some of the full lengths being released; not to mention this is five songs of pure beauty and brilliance.

“Skylark” kicks this EP off with their signature sound of driving riffs and huge melodies. They use the leads to create some of the best melodies in metal and they showcase it here on this killer opening song. Being close to seven minutes in length we get into almost epic territory with each part of the song adding more to the song. The solo in the middle is godly but it does not stop there because of how they use those lead melodies. “The Golden Acre” follows it up with another huge effort. Once again, you have some cool riffs with some leads over top adding so much melody. The fretwork these guys display is absolutely incredible. There’s leads always going on, not just in solos and that is the key to their brilliant formula.

The title track is another huge song that starts off rather humble but builds as it goes. It’s starts off mid-paced with their signature use of the leads to create the perfect atmosphere. This song is slightly more complex in it’s structure with some cool time changes. The solo halfway through is absolutely brilliant and leads right into the lead melodies that are a huge part of why their formula works the way it does. These songs are made to take you on a musical journey and they always succeed. “Meadowland” is the perfect acoustic interlude to carry you to the closer. Their brand of melody is even more infectious on an acoustic guitar and this song is absolutely beautiful. “Under the Greenwood Tree” rounds this EP up in the most epic way being a re-recording of a fan favorite from their 2011 album Dawn of Infinity.  This song is a faster more upbeat track with driving riffs and their incredible melodies. Even though this song is slightly less than five minutes in length is a huge track and the perfect way to end a perfect EP.

This EP was released just in time for their 20th Anniversary and it is also a nice segue way to their next full length. If this EP is any indication of what is coming on that album my excitement level is highly elevated. A lot of times, EPs are for die hard fans and serious collectors, but this case is different. If this does not become part of your collection, you are truly missing out on an amazing metal experience. Don’t do that to yourself….this is essential!


Line Up:
Josh Winnard – Vocals
Christian Horton – Guitar
Patrick Jenkins – Guitar
Adam Sidaway – Drums

1. Skylark
2. The Golden Acre
3. Ridge & Furrow
4. Meadowland
5. Under the Greenwood Tree

Dark Forest