Hailing from the Netherlands, Fluisteraars play black metal. Dromers is Fluisteraars’s debut full-length studio CD (courtesy of Germany’s Eisenwald Tonschmiede in conjunction with Cold Void Emanations), having already unleashed two well-received demos.
Dromers consists of three tracks totaling more than 34 minutes, so the shortest track here clocks in at more than eight minutes. The CD starts off the “De Doornen,” and immediately the cult black metal sound assaults the senses. The pace is fast, the rhythm guitar distorted, the drums straightforward and obscured, and the vocals scowled by a demon down below. As with most traditional black metal, the approach is relatively simple, with the guitar riffs lasting a long time, but there are also a few switches in approach, with acoustic guitars complemented by melodic leads signaling transitions. Melody clashes with harmony, giving the overall sound a richness very few other genres can achieve.
“Kuddedier” continues in the same vein as “De Doornen,” with the principal guitar riff changing very little. However, the lead guitar riff undergoes a dramatic shift, evoking a more mournful, emotive approach that will get the attention of most listeners. This shift continues with the vocals, which bring with them a pain that is palpable and present. The atmosphere here is one of a bleak winter, with hints of chilled breezes infiltrated even the warmest of places. It is this type of black metal that I really enjoy, so this track has become my favorite of the three.
Closing out the CD is the track “Wortels Van Angst.” This track is completely different than the previous two, with the rhythm and lead guitars working closer together to weave complementary melodies that produce a more accessible composition. Like “De Doornen,” there is an atmospheric quality to Wortels Van Angst” that moves the emotions, only in this instance the effect is more majestic, almost mystical. This track also brings forward some nice work on piano, which offsets a blistering guitar screech.
In totality, Dromers is a moving slab of black metal, one that hearkens to the beginnings of the genre yet also hints at its bleak future. Fluisteraars makes an impressive debut in the crowded international genre of black metal, and that in itself is most impressive.