Night Shall Drape Us - Official Website

Lunatic Choir

Finland Country of Origin: Finland

1. Hymn Of Rebellion
2. Dead Eden
3. Ethereal Constrictor
4. Ashes Of Men
5. Unification
6. Lunacy And Horror
7. Under The Dead Sky
8. The Queen Of The Red Streams

Review by Fernando on April 29, 2024.

I’ve been talking a lot about Finnish black metal, and that country’s particular style of black metal has certainly had an impact on modern black metal as a whole. And today we have the case of a supergroup of sorts, but in reality, this is the project of multi-instrumentalist LHR, the current drummer of Horna and a host of other bands, and most of them with his brother Spellgoth, who once again, joins his brother with their fellow Horna bandmate Infection, and current Behexen guitarist (and one of the pioneers of the Nidrosian black metal scene in Norway) Wraath, who all joined forces to bring Night Shall Drape Us and it’s debut album Lunatic Choir through Season Of Mist.

From that list of well-regarded and seasoned black metal veterans, you can obviously have high expectations, but it should be noted this is LRH’s brainchild, as he writes, performs and records all the music and instruments himself, whilst the rest of the core line-up provides the vocals and lyrics, however they are also gearing up to play live with an additional session guitarist rounding the line-up. At any rate, since this is a Finnish affair, does it mean you can expect some classic Finn black metal? Not exactly, while the band do display the same level of melodicism and shar rock hooks most expect from Finnish black metal, but LHR isn’t just rehashing the music from the past or the various projects he’s been a part of, the music here definitely has a classic black metal influence, but the project is also forward facing, from the production to the sound, this is a modern black metal record but it’s modern in a good way, furthermore LHR and the shared vocals of Wraath, Infection and Spellgoth also take the music down a ritualistic road which completes the entire experience, not just with their growling vocals but also their choir and clean vocals, additionally each vocalist takes the lead in the track their best suited and it works perfectly without ever feeling disjointed or as if they were fighting for space.

Technically speaking this is an insanely well crafted record, LHR is of course an excellent drummer but hearing all his talents in every other instrument, specially guitar and bass which he rarely if ever gets to play, his guitar riffing in particular is on par with the guitar play of Jon Nödtveidt or Infernus, switching from fast aggressive riffs, to bending strings, and more complex and dynamic picking and melodies, it’s downright breathtaking, and as a whole, it doesn’t sound like a single person did all of the instruments but it is. Furthermore the compositions are kept concise and are all evenly paced, with a meaty 40 minute runtime, the record wastes no time at all, and it goes by quickly. My one critique though is that it maybe goes by a bit too fast for my liking, and since the music has a very definitive sound of ritualistic and melodic black metal, near the end it can feel a bit one note, but by no means is it monotonous, as LHR very wisely crafted this record in a way where you get various musical twists and turns that will leave you satisfied but doesn’t overindulge himself.

As a whole this is an excellent display of a truly talented artist performing at a peak and with extra help from killer vocalists, and while I was left wanting more due to my own preferences, I still look forward to whatever comes next for this project and it’s also my favorite type of black metal in the sense that it has all the hallmarks of classic black metal, but has just enough polish to serve as a gateway album to the more extreme corners of the subgenre.

Rating: 8 out of 10