Review 841 : Alda – A Distant Fire – English

Alda spreads its blackness.

Created in 2007 in the United States, the band composed since the beginning of Stephanie Knittle (bass/violin/vocals), Timothy Brown (guitar), Jace Bruton (guitar/choirs) and Michael Korchonnoff (vocals/drums/harmonium, With the End in Mind) unveils us today A Distant Fire, its fourth album. They are accompanied on stage by Vines (guitare, Eigenlicht, Fauna).

The album begins with the melancholy of First Light, a composition that quickly integrates us to this vigil around the campfire, giving birth to Stonebreaker, a raw but majestic track. Melody is as heady as vocals are rocky, creating a storm of strength that also know how to be haunting and soaring, without forgetting blackness lurks in the shadows. The song spawns Drawn Astray, a slower and more airy composition, mainly thanks to those shards of softness in the background, but the song wears some Folk elements, then really hooking patterns. Clean vocals come to mesmerize us before the flood of blackness comes back, coupled to dissonant leads, then Forlorn Peaks offers some coldness drawn into Black Metal roots, but also an ambience that perfectly embodies the artwork in my opinion. The tempo slows down, but riffs are still heady, creating a seizing continuity, on which screamed vocals alight naturally, then Loo-Wit, a short instrumental song, begins with a wind of softness. The song is hypnotic and quiet, and it drives us to A Distant Fire, the very long last track. Clean vocals join the clean sounding melody before the rhythmic bursts into fire. During the sixteen minutes of the song, we will explore raw, ethereal and mysterious universes, while adjusting its speed, sometimes becoming cold, mystical, but the flame bursts all along the song to revive intensity before definitely fading away after a final part with Folk accents.

An Alda album is an experience out of time, and A Distant Fire is no exception. The sound slowly comes to life before bursting into fire, decreasing, reviving again, but it never really dies until this final that strangely sounds like the introduction, creating a perfect circle of dark and mystic communion.


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