Vandöd - As CD
Grade: 10/10
Genre: Black metal
Origin: Sweden
Released: 2007
Website: Vandöd
Label: Ex Mortem Records
Uploaded: 09.04.08

In complete and utter honesty I have to admit that this is one of the most original black metal albums I’ve ever encountered, and definitely not in a bad way. Vandöd starts off with a semi-industrial vibed track, sending out some really mixed signals as it reminds me of more experimental hardcore/grind acts such as The Dillinger Escape Plan and the likes. Don’t get me wrong, this is definitely black metal, just indulging some unusual influences. Ankarbranth offers some gnarly vocals, not the usual black vocals either. And when IX gets going he goes into some deep clean vocals before he starts screaming, and suddenly the entire vibe changes as he growls away and the music takes a step towards death metal and starts mangle like hell. And then it’s back to the almost unique black metal and extremely atmospheric clean vocals. Towards the end of the track the more classic black vibe sets in and Ankarbranth sends shivers down my spine with his vocal work…
It is this mix of influences and really unusual song construction that makes As one of the most interesting albums I’ve heard in ages. Melodic, fast forward black metal can suddenly turn into a operatic, bombastic metal choir as it shifts to screaming mangling and into a slow, haunting nightmare. Every time I listen to this album (and trust me, I’ve done so a lot) I hear something new. There’s so much detail, so many new experiences with each listen. Vandöd puts in so much energy it makes me wonder why the hell the world’s not raging about this act. Bloody wicked composing and musicianship. There’s such a bloody magnificent vibe surrounding this album, and in a genre filled with clichés this young band manages to offer something completely new. I’ve never heard the likes! It’s 34 minutes of utter paranoia and schizophrenia – with a soundtrack!