Celtic mythology / folklore doesn’t interest me much and I don’t generally appreciate (m)any bands that dwell upon it (or even visit it), so I’d have been pretty wary of Black Funeral’s latest full-length offering, ‘Ankou And The Death Fire’, had I been aware of the prevailing theme – something along the lines of opening the gates to the Celtic netherworld – prior to purchase. Indeed, I might even have given it a wide berth altogether.
However, I invested blindly on the strength of my searing admiration for BF’s previous work, not realising either that Drowning The Light mastermind Azgorh was now on board. Anyhow, I’ve lucked out, to an extent, as this doesn’t sound Celticy, pagany or epic any way, shape or form.
Rather, what we get is a thoroughly enjoyable 46 minutes of atmospheric, spooky, occult Black Metal with insidious melodies and a haunting aura. It’s also an album that undeniably gets better as it progresses, building to a fantastic climax which leaves the listener yearning for more.
Decent lyrics to read through on the insert along with some liner notes, a gatefold jacket (nice cover art) and a download card so you can also grab some MP3s if that’s your thing. And a poster, too.