Boomkat Product Review:
Since his release from captivity (read : Prison) in 2009 Varg Vikernes has been remarkably productive. He’s definitely got plenty of time to make up for, but I for one didn’t expect two albums in two years. Last year’s ‘Belus’ was a glorious return to the low-fidelity stomp that had characterised his classic metal work (as opposed to the more electronic bent of his later records), and ‘Fallen’ goes even further into recapturing the spirit that characterised Vikernes’ early recordings. Vikernes mentions that ‘Fallen’ is (at least in his mind) a return to the kind of songwriting exhibited in ‘Det Som Engang Var’ rather than the more popular (and critically lauded) ‘Filosofem’ and in many ways it is. The doomy electronic elements are nowhere to be seen, but ‘Fallen’ is markedly more ‘composed’ than any of its predecessors. Also startling is just how clean and up-front Vikernes’ vocals are, a peculiar choice given the genre and taste of its fans. It is the first time I’ve really considered his age – here he sounds older, and any growl is startlingly unenhanced by the recording process. All of this makes ‘Fallen’ a much more original, and far more poignant album than its predecessor, and the addition of closing track ‘Til Hel og Tilbake Igjen’, possibly Vikernes’ weirdest piece to date sounding like some kind of Far East percussion and strings jam, is just the icing on the cake. Recommended.