Album Review: Atavistia – The Winter Way (Self Released)

Atavistia is an epic metal band from Vancouver, Canada. They explore various forms of metal within their music resulting in a symphonic mix of nature, atmosphere, and technically precise musicianship. The diversity of Atavistia, much like a forest in the full bloom of spring is something to behold.

Influenced by the epic landscapes and nature of British Columbia, the coldness of winter and the flourishing of summer can be felt in each song. Visions of lands long forgotten in time are key elements behind the music of Atavistia.

Now making the transition from a one-man project to a full band with more and more live appearances under their belts, Atavistia will release their long-awaited sophomore album The Winter Way on May 29th 2020.

Symphonic and pompous, From the Ancient Stones sets the cold, yet beautiful scene for what is an album that is every bit the epic you could hope it to be. When the ‘metal’ side of Atavistia then arrives in The Atavistic Forest they showcase a darker and much bleaker sound, one rooted in a black metal sound but not hostage to it and with a lot of symphonic frills.

Think along the lines of Wintersun, Ensiferum, Dimmu Borgir and more. It is certainly from the same dynamic family.

Through the Hollow Ravens Eyes then builds on an already impressive level of detail. The layering of frantic symphonic elements amongst varying vocals that are epic and guttural at times add a lot of impact. Whereas the incessant drum beat and winding riffs keep things feet-first within the metal world. Although it certainly pales in comparison to the former track. As well as the latter, Eternal Oceans which is a world-expanding, depth-filled journey where Atavistia grab us by the hand and lead us through the showcase of their wonders.

No single track is any less than an absolute beast of an epic. With only one track (aside from the intro) dropping below the 9 minute mark. The latter three come to a combined near 30 minute runtime!

Talking of which, Dawn of the Frozen Age certainly ups the sense of bombastic but also has a really dark and eerie turn that transforms the track into something quite different and heavy but equally as enjoyable.

The Forbidden One burns so brightly with heavy symphonic grandness from the start and only begins to let up at around the 4-minute mark. Even then, it exudes a cold chill with low and grumbling vocals, a strong guitar solo and smattering of intensity.

It’s the title track’s blast of iciness that closes The Winter Way out with a wonderful and unnerving look at a darkened and frozen landscape. A scaled back and methodical start leads to flickers of metal savagery and a delightfully detailed vocal highs. Every bit the marathon you would expect at this stage and a pleasingly haunting way to end such a enormous and satisfying undertaking.

Atavistia – The Winter Way Full Track Listing:

1. From the Ancient Stones
2. The Atavistic Forest
3. Through the Hollow Ravens Eyes
4. Eternal Oceans
5. Dawn of the Frozen Age
6. The Forbidden One
7. The Winter Way


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Atavistia - The Winter Way (Self Released)
  • 8.5/10
    The Final Score - 8.5/10
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