'Fire Of The Spirit'
Twilight Fauna is one of those projects that is incredibly evocative. Spanning multiple genres but with a firm grounding in neofolk and atmospheric black metal, each album presents a haunting portrait of the Appalachian landscape as filtered through the mind of composer and multi-instrumentalist Ravenwood.
Switching between haunting acoustic instruments and low-fi, primitive black metal guitars and drums the album is intense in it's atmospheres. On the one hand serene and melancholic, while on the other insatiable and demonic. It is a formula that Ravenwood has been refining over the past few Twilight Fauna albums and it continues to pay off with his sprawling and progressive song construction tying the two halves of his sound together with ease.
Songs such as 'Walking With The Ghost', 'A Green Moth In The Mist', 'Anointing Oil', and 'Tongues Of Knowledge' weigh in with long-run times and perfectly encapsulate the coming together of the sounds as they meander through each. While the likes of 'Laying Out The Fleece' and 'A Glass Dalia' are shorter and as a result just favour the folk instruments which breaks up the track listing quite nicely and shifts the emphasis from the heavier elements.
Despite the many low-fi elements in the album, the mix is rather good. Again showing a progression from the last album the balance between melodic and harsh is a bit slicker this time round. As always atmosphere is king, but the subtlety at work in places shows the rough edges smoothing out slightly.
This is another beautiful album from Ravenwood. A great blend of melody and malady that pushes both folk and black metal into mutually beneficial directions. It's great to see this project grow in skill and scope and hopefully it will continue to do so for a long time to come.