Review 2270 : Crocell – Of Frost, Of Flame, Of Flesh – English

Denmark’s Crocell is back.

Three years after the release of their last two EPs, the band comprising Tommy Christensen (guitar), Onkel Kusse (bass, Illdisposed), Andreas Posselt (drums, Compos Mentis, Phantom), Asbjörn Steffensen (vocals, ex-The Petulant) and Mads Gath (guitar, Heaven’s Damnation, Urkraft, ex-The Petulant) unveil the release of their sixth album, Of Frost, Of Flame, Of Flesh, on Emanzipation Productions.

The album kicks off with Search of Solace, which quickly reveals its catchy darkness before letting it accelerate with the integration of vocals to become more furious. The sound returns, anchoring itself in a more haunting, melodic approach before flaring up again, leading us to Chanting Fire, where unifying elements are at work on the choruses between two outbursts of rage. A veil of calm and dissonance also settles in the middle of the composition, before letting it charge forward again to Claws of Piety, which in turn summons all the musicians’ rage to create a hurricane of uncompromising, devastating Black/Death Metal. Serpent’s Hunger begins with hazy harmonics before revealing its aggression, but we soon realize that it’s just as much a part of the track’s identity as the coldness, but the mix becomes more mysterious with the long Vortex which plunges us into the abyss before letting go of the reins. The intense contrast between the introduction and the rest of the track is striking, and the band’s only “respite” is the anguish of the break, before resuming their tornado and finally slowing down as they reach Fierce Desire, where more raw and straightforward influences are at work. The solo barely takes the pressure off, which returns with the same Old School roots on Of Frost, of Flame, of Flesh, where morbid Punk tones join saturation before Epilogue offers a majestic, heady sound to bring the album to a gentler close.

Crocell continues to evolve, embracing its violence but not forgetting its earlier and more melodic influences. Of Frost, Of Flame, Of Flesh will equally appeal those who love devastating tracks and fans of ice-cold darkness.


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