Blut Aus Nord, "Ultima Thulee"
This, the first effort of France’s Blut Aus Nord, is a competent meld of horror synth and sparse, vague, Emperor-isms, culminating in a completely fucked, scary slab of thick black metal. Reminiscent of elder Immortal, Moonblood, Graveland minus the folk, Ultima Thulee stands as a strong debut, and given the use of the synth-scapes, can easily stand as a grindy brother to Burzum’s Filosofem of the next year (1996). “Son of Hoarfrost” and the Exorcist keys of “The Plain of Ida” quickly sinks the listener into the icy depths of Blut Aus Nord’s conception, the garbled swash of keys that permeate “From Hildskjalf” and the tortured vocals that litter themselves all over the nine tracks conjure visions and aura’s of journey, terror and despondency. Ultima Thulee can easily be summed up as one of the better mid-nineties black metal records, and can stand as obvious influence on the likes of Xasthur (vocals, atmosphere) all the way to any of your dismal, corpse-painted hordes out there.
Son of Hoarfrost