If back in the early days as a fledging reviewer, when I was casting judgment on a very vicious disc of Swedish black metal by Armagedda ‘The Final War Approaching’ I had been told I would be covering one of that band members folk project a decade later, I would of course have thought you were mad. Still that is exactly what has happened as the duo of S. Sandstrom and A. Petterson have been in many a group including the aforementioned as well as De Arma, Whirling, LIK, Volkermord and Leviathan. Still even the most grizzled black metal head needs to evolve and after beating their chests red raw it is good to go down a reflective path and get one with nature (lumberjack shirted or not).
With 2010 album ‘Vidderns Tolv Kapitel’ Lönndom completely eschewed from any black leanings and too a purely acoustic path that no doubt surprised even some of those that had stuck around to see what they were all about. It has taken a couple of years but this EP follows this trail and takes us into dusky camp lit woods once more with neofolk etched canvasses unfurled. The cover art is the perfect accompaniment to this journey and my promo is different from the one displayed here actually zooming in on the three characters around the fire. It was something I felt like staring at for an age.
A creaking door, ticking clock sees us into ‘I Fallet’ which is held over by a skewed guitar harmony. It is off kilter a little but gathers a more melodic tremble as it picks up. around this are some nice croons joining in from the vocal department and it really does sound like a jam around a camp fire after the beans have been digested and the spirits are being knocked back (thankfully minus any Blazing Saddles sound effects). There is a real sort of swaggering twang about the guitar lines here and it is easy to get into the jaunty refrain and infected by the tune. ‘En stillastående vandring’ is calmer and is just spoken / whispered vocals around a simple guitar line. It’s effective though and reminds a lot of everything from Dornenreich to the shamanic overtures of Blood Of The Black Owl. Bårgå finishes this with both our rugged all terrain vocalists joining in the sing along and picking up more of a strumming refrain on things. There is a slightly maudlin feel to it though but maybe that is just that nature has over awed or the booze has done its job. A creaking door, they have retired to the log cabin to sleep it off; silence.
There is not a huge amount to go on here but for the 20 minutes or so the EP plays there is lots of atmosphere and there is a charm about it. Also a lot of care has gone into the finished product I suspect, especially if you pick this up on rough card sleeve, grey vinyl with poster. Will these musicians ever to travel back to the black or will they continue down this path? Time will see.
(6/10 Pete Woods)