Review 1880 : Ristridi – Dark Solstice – English

Ristridi gets down to business.

After producing a number of covers on YouTube, German guitarist Michael « Ristridi » Wöss (Omega Point, ex-Agathodaimon) surrounds himself with Frank « Frankior » Richter (vocals, All Will Know, Orcus Patera, Pentarium), Maximilian Jänsch (bass, All Will Know) and Oliver Kraus (drums, Cravenhall, Dagdrøm…), all members of Agathodaimon, to announce his debut EP, Dark Solstice.

Dark Whispers, the first track, immediately sets the tone with its jerky approach that grows stronger as the instruments appear. Drums, then bass, keyboards and guitar come together to finally present Genesis, an epic-sounding composition that easily integrates saturated or clear vocals into its charge, while revealing complex-crafted leads. The mix remains coherent and doesn’t hesitate to dip into Power, Melodic Death or even Heavy, just like on Perihelion, which also offers more groovy and catchy passages, while some leads are rather ominous. Prog influences bind all the worlds together with impressive dexterity, which also prevails on A Thousand Hearts and its rawer approach, which at times turns into heady dissonance while letting vocal parts appear from time to time. The abrupt unexpected final lets Dream Worlds showcase its ethereal keyboards, which turns into regular riffs where the different voices appear to create an intriguing contrast. The track remains relatively gentle, especially compared to Break The Silence, the final composition, which quickly introduces more aggressive elements into its sharp, elaborate mix, naturally adopting more majestic parts. The final break allows the vocalist to talk to us in German, while the rhythmic pattern ignites, then the sound fades out for good.

Ristridi‘s complexity and talent set them apart, capable of integrating any element into Dark Solstice with impressive ease and naturalness. The EP is sometimes difficult to access, but it will delight fans of surprising Progressive Metal.


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