San Diego, California is not usually known as a hot bed for all things black metal, but along comes Elegiac, the alter ego of multi-instrumentalist/singer/songwriter Zane Young and his new album Black Clouds of War for De tenebrarum Pinricipio. With clear influences from the Scandinavian scene as well as some of the more underground US acts of recent years, Elegiac blaze forth with ten tracks of epic might, just the right amount of majestic atmosphere woven in between the maniacal hatred. The lengthy title track kicks things off with some splendid acoustic guitar work before the more traditional frozen black metal arrangements kick in, and this leads into the rampaging "Cosmic Holocaust", complete with Young's screaming rasps, blast beats, and melodic guitar chording. "Beyond the Physical Realm" sees plenty of twists and turns, the layers of melodic guitars then crushing forth with menacing might, and other vintage sounding highlights include "Heathen Supremacy", the ferocious "Symbols of Power", the folky/prog rock of "Ashwind", and the hellish fury of closer "Visions".
For serious black metal fans, there's lots to like here on Black Clouds of War. Plenty brutal in spots, dripping with atmosphere, and some expert instrumentation to be found throughout. As one-man black metal acts go, this one's a good one. Seek it out.
Track Listing1. Black Clouds of War 09:14
2. Cosmic Holocaust 06:10
3. Beyond the Physical Realm 06:24
4. Transcendence (Interlude) 01:36
5. Heathen Supremacy 07:30
6. The Hanging Head of Death 07:44
7. Symbols of Power 06:16
8. Ashwind (Interlude) 04:44
9. Creatures of Night 04:42
10. Visions 06:56