7 Jan 2012

Deviator - Way of Warriors: Hymn to Immortals [Compilation] (2011, Glorious North Productions)

Most depressive or ambient black metal bands have very little going on structure-wise. Simplistic guitars and repetitive drumming is abundant in the genre aswell as lengthy tracks, mostly with few layers of instrumentation. Ukranian black metalist Lord Hastner of "DEVIATOR" is among these traditionalists, though to say this band is a deviation would be an overstatement.

I've been rather harsh on this summary of Deviator's rather short carreer, and it's always very difficult to grade a compilation like this, especially when it's from an unknown band like this Ukranian project. One thing is certain though: Way of Warriors gives a fair and satisfactory look into the pretty extensive and gloomy back catalogue of Lord Hastner's band. It's always enjoyable to hear how a band evolves and how musicians go from playing one style to another.

Deviator started out playing ambient black metal with a twist of depressive black and ended up playing a more death-like style of black metal. Seeing the transcendence between genres and styles is fun, and in all the periods of Deviator it seems there are both good and less enjoyable tracks. One thing I found out while listening to Way of Warriors is this: Deviator, like so much metal, must be enjoyed loud. You'll get the best sound and be able to hear the best details if you turn up those speakers.

Production-wise the material's great. It gives a great sense of atmosphere and emotion while still maintaining the raw sound of black metal. But regarding the recordings themselves I am completely baffled by what sounds like off rhythms. In a few select tracks it sounds like the guitar is playing a LOT slower than the drums, as if the guitars were recorded without a click-, ghost- or drumtrack. This botches up the rhythm and flow of the entire song and I find it really difficult to enjoy a track like this.
Overall Way of Warriors - Hymn to Immortals is a fair overview of Deviator's discography, portraying both the good and the bad elements. It's (almost) always nice to see and hear a band evolve and take in new elements and styles. 6/10 guitars.

1. Old Melancholy
2. Forgotten Hope
3. The Last Day of Mankind
4. Mighty Black Inner Flame
5. Mesmerized by Blood
6. Raw Symphony of Sorrow
7. Undying Darkness
8. To Forgotten Path - Triumph of the Will
9. Thy Blood in my Veins
10. Black Sorrow
11. Funeral Future Bells
12. Primordial Darkness pt. 1
13. Primordial Darkness pt. 2
14. Way of Warriors - Hymn to Immortals

DEVIATOR official site
Glorious North Productions official site

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