Bindrune Recordings, 2015
The eagerly awaited follow up to the grandiose last album :Tahoma: has finally arrived – and it does not disappoint. ALDA from Tacoma, Washington, USA deliver with their new album Passage yet another dreamy piece of music that will make you close your eyes, enjoy and smile.
Starting off with The Clearcut, which is a 15 minute journey through ALDA’s typical trademarks – folky, calm, acoustic passages interwoven with fast black metal, not too overpowering harsh vocals and clear vocals. The title track, Passage, has a little bit of an old school feel to it, yet with ALDA’s sweeping melodies. This is a band that has their own easily recognisable style, which makes them stand out from other US black metal bands. On Weathering a 60ies folk influence creeps in, clear vocals, a chorus of ‘aaahhhs’ and ‘oooohs’ before a slow descend into fast blasts, and more quiet parts that end in a crescendo of lots of cymbals and blast beats.
The Crooked Trail is a quiet acoustic instrumental only piece, and the last song, Animis, builds up slowly into a manic, slow ending with desperate, almost DSBM like vocals. Very sorrowful and melancholic.
The production has improved since :Tahoma:, it’s clearer without losing it’s earthiness and organic feel. All in all a good record, recommended for everyone into the Cascadian music style, and one of the better albums of this year so far.