(2018) Frosttide: Decedents – Enshrined EP

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Artist: Frosttide
Album: Decedents EP
Release: 18.05.2018 / 20.11.2018 (remixed & remastered)
Label: self-published

 

Frosttide has been ready and willing to be on the metal scene’s radar again for a while, hard at work in the studio preparing a new EP. Their last release was the single, “From Dusk to Ascend”, which was released in late summer 2017 and was very well-received. As such, Decedents has a reputation to uphold now, and we were very curious to hear how it would sound.

[Updated as of 29.11.2018] Recently, Frosttide joined forces with Out of Line Music, which meant that they were able to remix and remaster Decedents for a rerelease on 30.11.2018, now entitled Decedents – Enshrined, and includes the instrumental versions of the songs as well.

Check out the lyric video for “Tranquility” here:

The EP opens with “Ocean’s Peace”, a pretty and slightly long intro piece at 2:03, which flows nicely into the (ironically?) dynamic “Tranquility.” The vocals instantly prove to be vastly improved over the band’s older material. There are nice solos by Felipe Muñoz on keyboards and Juho Patinen on guitar in the track to add some spice between vocal segments, and everything feels like it’s off to a very nice start.

“Carved into Ice” debuted on May 11th with its lyric video, which appears MIA since the remastering of the album. It was almost disappointing that this album had initially been released at the beginning of summer, as this track is so beautifully cold throughout – fortunately the new version is coming out during the chill of early winter and feels much more time-appropriate. This s a great song to blast on a stormy winter night next to the fire – wonderful ambiance. There are also some potentially Viking themes in this, as it references masts and sails, and that ‘Viking choir’ is used quite nicely as well.

“Final Hour” starts off gently with some wintry, tinkling pianos and mysterious music that builds up nicely. If thrilling drums (courtesy of Joonas Nislin) and epic choirs are your thing, “Final Hour” is a song to watch out for. There’s a nice gentle break in the middle to allow for some breathing room before picking back up to the fierce music and Patinen’s wonderful growls. The final of the five tracks is “Revenant”, a title that works very well with the album thematically speaking. It brings to mind longish epics, the likes of Ensiferum or Wintersun, with the blend of pure heavy metal and crisp, cool orchestration. It’s also not quite epic in length at a clean 6:00, but it has a lot of little elements and twists to it that make it feel like a really big song, and it ends the album on as high a note as it started.

 

Overall, this EP proves to be a good step forward for Frosttide, with its imaginative music and excellent playing. The vocals are a sure improvement over the past, and the music in general feels more solidly put-together. The music can be considered epic in a sense (not a power metal sense, to be clear), with great use of choirs that isn’t over-used or overwhelming, which is always a risk. There is power and oomph, but it’s not turned up overly high, allowing for good pacing throughout the five tracks.  While the EP is extremely mature in both sound and performance, my initial major fault in the album was the mixing quality, which had been lacking. Since the remix and remaster, the album is basically at its full potential and I no longer have any complaints! As someone who’s struggled to get into Frosttide before now, I’m definitely on high alert for the next album from these guys.

Rating: 10/10

Tracklist:
1. Ocean’s Peace
2. Tranquility
3. Carved into Ice
4. Final Hour
5. Revenant

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