The Locust Mantra

Third Storm

Fans of Scandinavian Black Metal, if you haven’t listened to THIRD STORM from Uppsala, Sweden, […]
January 9, 2024

Fans of Scandinavian Black Metal, if you haven’t listened to THIRD STORM from Uppsala, Sweden, then you haven’t lived yet. For the moment, that is. THIRD STORM is a Swedish Black Metal band that formed in 1986 and broke up/went on a hiatus in 1988 after releasing a couple of demos. However, they came back together in 2014 and made significant progress with the release of their debut EP “Tarîtîya Me” in 2015 and debut album “The Grand Manifestation” in 2018. Now the band has announced their second album “The Locust Mantra,” scheduled for release through Chaos Records on October 6th. After listening to the album almost two weeks prior to its release date, I can honestly say that THIRD STORM have truly outdone themselves on this record.

To start off, if I use two words to describe “The Locust Mantra” overall, I would say it is fast and brutal. The blast beats from Jesper Ojala greatly contribute to this, since he uses them on every track. Ojala’s drumming and the fast guitar riffs from Hasse Hansson and David Eriksson help create a strong opener in the form of “The Clandestine Gospel.” In the midst of this harsh sound, Havel Bozarslan vocalizes the band’s lyrics with a growl that has a Black Metal-style shrillness to it. It’s also worth noting that while Black Metal bands rarely use solos, THIRD STORM uses them on this record, mainly on “Demigod Doctrine” and “World Infernal.” In my opinion, the solos make up for the use of acoustic guitars used on these tracks as well, which I didn’t particularly like.

One of the band's main strengths on "The Locust Mantra" is their careful balance of music and lyrics on tracks that are more than 4 or 5 minutes, such as "When Noble Hearts Failed" and "Inescapable Echoes of War." However, the five men fall short in this arena with the shortest song "In the Garden of Crystallized Souls." There are very few lyrics, so there is also a lengthy fill. THIRD STORM could have remedied this with either more lyrics or just scratch the track altogether. Nonetheless, they bring their second full-length record to a strong close with "Dawn of the Fearmongers," which is even more intense than the opener.

When it's all said and done, it would be a disservice to simply call "The Locust Mantra" a "good album." With amazing riffs and suffocating blast beats, this work by THIRD STORM has elements of their home country's long-standing Black Metal scene, as well as that of their neighbor Norway. My only grievances were the acoustic guitars and short instrumental fill on the eighth track. However, those could arguably be overlooked. If you're not burnt out on all the Scandinavian Black Metal that's been being released lately, then don't pass up "The Locust Mantra."

8 / 10









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"The Locust Mantra" Track-listing:

1. The Clandestine Gospel
2. Mater Pest
3. Demigod Doctrine
4. World Infernal
5. When Noble Hearts Failed
6. Inescapable Echoes of War
7. Alter Omega
8. In the Garden of Crystallized Souls
9. Dawn of the Fearmongers

Third Storm Lineup:

Hasse Hansson – Rhythm Guitar
David Eriksson – Lead Guitar
Havel Bozarslan – Vocals
Daniel Håkansson – Bass
Jesper Ojala – Drums

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