For anyone familiar with Drudkh and unfamiliar with Windswept, both bands share Roman Sayenko, along with two other band members, and was formed in 2017, with the goal of expressing through improvisation and capturing the moments through raw feeling. The Onlooker follows on from the 2017 debut The Great Cold Steppe and continues the fierce nature of Ukrainian Black Metal that certainly captures the attention.
There is nothing quite like the sound of a child’s music box to intrigue and to some build suspense, which is exactly how this album opens, before the shrill sound of strings begins and the intensity is immediately through the ceiling, this is even before the bloodcurdling sound of the vocal joins the fold and takes it to another level. The raw sound that the band aim for is certainly captured and expressed throughout the release as the non-stop intensity and bordering on uncomfortable tone is heard in its full delight, along with a constant glorious drone that so often runs throughout Black Metal.
The 8 tracks span 37 minutes of high-quality music, including a plethora of emotion expressed through the high-speed drum beats and darkened guitar tones which not only infiltrate the brain, they resonate for some considerable time as they have been an ever present throughout the listening experience.
The Onlooker is the perfect balance of pleasure through uncomfortable listening as this harsh sounding music not only erupts but also soothes and the vocal is that of a thousand nightmares. The three band members who go by the names V. K. and R. that make up Windswept have created a formidable example of intense and punishing Black Metal. It is certainly an album that leaves its mark, however also remains on repeat, which as the band don’t perform live, is the only way that this power house of Black Metal can be experienced and any fan of Black Metal should experience this quality Ukrainian example.
The Onlooker was released February 8th 2019 via Season Of Mist / Underground Activists.
- I’m Oldness and Oblivion (Intro)
3. A Gift to Feel Nostalgia
4. Disgusting Breed of Hagglers
5. Gustav Meyrink’s Prague
6. Insomnia of the Old Men
7. Times of No Dreams & No Poets
8. Bookworm, Loser, Pauper