After two self-released EPs and a split (with Hiisi), the Finnish duo Oath finally signed a contract with a professional label, Belgium-based Immortal Frost Productions, in order to release their debut full length. The project consists of two experienced musicians: Ville ‘V-Khaoz’ Pallonen, who you might know from Azaghal, Hin Onde, Wyrd, Druadan Forest or Hellkult, amongst others, and A. ‘Grim666’ Klemm of Kalmankantaja / Hautakammio / Lathspell / Seal Of Beleth / Dead Girl 13-fame.
Saatanan Myrsky Yllä Pyhän Maan (it means something like ‘Satan’s Storm Over The Holy Land’) was recorded in January 2014 at Patologian Laboratorio, and will be released in an edition of 500 CD-copies only. The album lasts for forty two minutes and brings an extremely grim, bleak and primitive (and once again this is meant the most positive way!) form of Black Metal, both melodious and rhythmic. Most pieces are rather fast and power-driven, yet the whole maintains an atmosphere that is very oppressive and Second Wave-oriented. Of course there are some evident connections with some of the members’ former bands (Lathspell or very early Azaghal might come to mind), but there is a ‘general’ approach of the Finnish Underground scene in general (and then I am referring to the likes of Behexen, Satanic Warmaster, Sacrilegious Impalement or Diaboli, to give you a rather general idea). And what’s more, the band often shows up with rather specific ideas on top of the essence of ‘tradition’; i.e. certain synth-alike additions, the totally-decelerated passages, and so on.
Finally a word about the artwork and the sound. When it comes to the latter, well, I cannot but praise the production. It’s rough, unpolished and sharp-edged, yet once again 1) perfectly fitting to this kind of material and 2) not beneath any level (no noise, no contra-mixed situations). And the artwork has been done by Moornebheym once again, somewhat the preferred partner to Immortal Frost when it comes to cover paintings (but without exception wonderful, time after time).