Halfvergaan Ontwaakt


This year saw the unveiling of WEDERGANGER's debut full-length album "Halfvergaan Ontwaakt". Formed just two […]
By Erika Kuenstler
October 27, 2015
Wederganger - Halfvergaan Ontwaakt album cover

This year saw the unveiling of WEDERGANGER's debut full-length album "Halfvergaan Ontwaakt". Formed just two years ago, WEDERGANGER's line-up immediately shows off a quartet of well-established musicians. Fronted by Alfschijn, a longstanding former vocalist of HEIDEVOLK, the remainder of the band aren't exactly new to the music scene either, with each having experience in a slew of other bands. And this level of musicianship is apparent right off the bat with their debut effort, resulting in a stunning opus which is mind-blowing.

A discordant intro leads us into a slow-paced opening of "Dwaallichtbezwering" that gradually takes on a faster and darker undertow. Immediately striking is the complete amalgamation of different genres. The instruments take on a mixture of Doom and almost Rock 'n Roll influences, whilst the vocals adopt a harsh rasp more commonly found in the Black Metal scene.  "Gelderse Drek" on the other hand sees a bit more of a second wave of Black Metal feel come to the fore. In stark contrast to this, the clean vocals in "Dodendans" lend the song a melancholic air, an element which is further reinforced in the almost ballad-like feel in certain sections of "Vlammenvonnis", where the harsher and cleaner vocals interlace to provide a poignant countercoup. And breaking up in the subsequent aural onslaught is the piano interlude of "Schimmenspel", which gives the listener a fleeting glimpse of tranquillity before the following "Walmend Graf" explodes in, making it sound even darker and more aggressive. Ending the album off with "Zwarte Gedachten", a repetitive riff played in the Egyptian scale lends the song an almost oriental atmosphere which works surprisingly well with the more typical Black Metal overlay. Again, some of the discordance from the opening track is cleverly woven into the song, bringing the album back full circle.

WEDERGANGER completely shuck off any shackles imposed by genre boundaries: whilst quintessentially and undeniably Black Metal, "Halfvergaan Ontwaakt" is so much more than just that. This is an album that I've had on repeat for days now, and I doubt that this will change any time soon. Certainly, there are a few very rare occasions where progressions from one section to another seem a bit forced, but apart from this very small flaw, "Halfvergaan Ontwaakt" is a fresh and unique breath of fresh air that should be amongst the crowning jewels of any Black Metal fan's collection. And considering that this is just the debut, just the beginning, it is nothing short of excellent, and brings to mind a J. R. R. Tolkien quote: "It's a dangerous business, Frodo, going out your door. You step onto the road, and if you don't keep your feet, there's no knowing where you might be swept off to." And I personally can't wait to see where WEDERGANGER sweeps us off to next.

9 / 10

Almost Perfect

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"Halfvergaan Ontwaakt" Track-listing:

1. Dwaallichtbezwering
2. Gelderse Drek
3. Dodendans
4. Wera-Wulfa
5. Vlammenvonnis
6. Schimmenspel
7. Walmend Graf
8. Zwarte Gedachten

Wederganger Lineup:

MJWW - Guitars
Botmuyl - Screams
Alfschijn - Vocals
Mysteriis - Drums

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