Unearthed Elf is a one-man band project, created by Keith D of the band Arctic Sleep. It mixes fantasy folklore, hard hitting doom, power metal & much more. This is an album that will surprise you.
It’s a trip into the netherworld, the place where shadows grow & the Unearthed Elf awaits.
Opening song, Into The Catacomb Abyss, is the first steps into the darkness below. It welcomes you with open arms, a lovely beat that yanks at the neck muscles. Hard & heavy it’s in serious contrast to the clean, light & powerful vocals.
The combination takes a little getting used too at first but the amazing double header of Never See The Sun Again & Eternal Night really ensures it’s not a lingering worry.
The latter of the two in particular is stunning, a brooding & haunting song that pulls & picks at your senses. Keith D is very talented, helping the listener picture dark & ancient forests twisted by magical events. Musically there often isn’t much that grounds this album in fantasy but the vocals & lyrics more then make up for that.
The one & a half minute riff assault that is Gauntlets of Volcanic Doom sets up the epic that is Vial of Holy Water Found in an Ancient, Cobweb-Laden Mausoleum. A soaring tune backed up with a chuggy beat & flashes of religious-like chanting. It’s one of the best songs on the album & followed by the fantastic Candles in the Crypt. An instruments only song that shows just why rock & metal fans get so excited over what can be done with a guitar.
There isn’t much of a dip in quality with only the slower, doomier Lighting a Mummy on Fire lacking a memorable hook. Songs like Ossified Remains & A Forest of Graveyards ensure things end on a high though, with the latter being a near 8 minute epic that won’t be forgotten anytime soon. Riffs to knock your head off, it drifts along majestically giving it a real finale feel.
Into The Catacomb Abyss is a hell of a journey, one taken hand in hand with the Unearthed Elf. All manner of sounds are heard & what sounds they are… at the end you’ll be left with just one question for the Elf.
When can we do this again?
Overall Track List:
1. Into The Catacomb Abyss
2. Never See The Sun Again
3. Eternal Night
4. Gauntlets of Volcanic Doom
5. Vial Of Holy Water Found In An Ancient, Cobweb-Laden Mausoleum
6. Candles In The Crypt
7. Lighting The Mummy On Fire
8. Realm Of The Beholder
9. Ossified Remains
10. A Forest Of Gravestones
Into The Catacomb Abyss is released on October 31st (Halloween), 2016. If you’d like to know more about the project you can find more information on the Unearthed Elf website.
Unearthed Elf - Into The Catacomb Abyss (Self Released)
The Final Score - 8.5/10
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