Advent – Valhöl


Jul 15, 2001
The starry attic
Advent – Valhöl
Self Released – Demo – Jan 2003
By Russell Garwood

Having reviewed (and been duly impressed by) Advent’s professional sounding debut, "From A Distant Landscape", I was eager to hear their sophomore demo. Upon listening, I was not disappointed. "Valhöl" marks impressive developments in nearly every aspect of the band’s sound; the music is still undeniably symphonic black metal, but there is a new diversity and variety to the sound, aided by increasingly mature song-writing. The lineup remains unchanged from Advent’s debut, excluding bass duties as the band are joined by a full time member, Luigi Bertolotto for this recording.

Guitars courtesy of Giorgio Mula are more complex than the band’s previous effort; increasingly layered, there is more interplay with symphonics, and occasional acoustics effectively fragment the distortion. Federico Capellaro’s clean vox have improved immensely – the graceful, catchy tunes juxtapose both witch screams and more guttural almost death growling. Spoken verses introduce further variety, and add character to each section of the verse-chorus orientated songs. Stefano Lentini contributes prominent, rich synths, which - rather than just helping create atmosphere - in some sections take a lead role in providing the melody. Drums courtesy of Raccardo Anzaldi are well performed, and match the elegant fluidity of the music’s changing atmospheres perfectly.

The three songs on "Valhöl" are of a consistently high standard; with frequent transformations in character, all remain cohesive due to the accomplished performances and mature, solid song-writing. This is aided by impressive recording for a demo and significantly more professional packaging than "Far From A Distant Landscape". Hence, I am again impressed with Advents efforts, and if the band continues to improve in this manner their future seems very bright indeed..