SELVANS - Lupercalia
After listening to this I had a weird thought of what KING CRIMSON's first album, In The Court of the Crimson King, would sound like if it was re-done in a symphonic black metal fashion. Just a crazy thought but anyways at the moment SELVANS are celebrating the release of their live CD, Hirpi, on Avantgarde Music. This one here, Lupercalia, is actually the band's debut full length from 2015 which also came out on Avantgarde Music. Now it's getting the Folkvangr Records reissue on cassette treatment.
SELVANS, in recording mode, are a two piece symphonic black metal act hailing from Italy. It consists of multi instrumentalist and vocalist Selvans Haruspex and Sethlans Fulguriator on guitar/bass and clean vocals. At times symphonic level is majestic and reaches the point of mid era DIMMU BORGIR minus the addition of the Austrian Philharmonic as session players. The two piece also cuts through the raging tremolo riffing and blast beated drumming style by adding various Italian folk elements. There's acoustic guitar interludes, flute solos over keyboard melodies along with some traditional harsh blackened vocals.
Overall I thought Lupercalia is a stunning release. Seven years ago you had people mocking this genre. Some points were valid as far bands falling into complacency in creativity, trendiness as well as pushing for more mainstream acceptableness. As far as any other complaints well those people were just morons. For me the past few years has been exciting for the sub-genre and it's bands like SELVANS who are making it that way. We've heard bands in the blackened realm who add something organic and homespun into their sound. Bout damm time the Italians got a good crack at it.