Wolves In The Throne Room - Thrice Woven (Artemisia Records) 2017
After the strange beauty of Celestite, Thrice Woven sounds like a redirection of Wolves’ original blueprint – to create a strain of black metal true to themselves and no-one else.
Progressive without fussiness, majestic but blessedly free of pomp, it’s a curious joining of neo-folk introspection and the cold brutality of the second wave, shifting woozily from icy blastbeats and roaring flurries of tremolo to campfire acoustica and back.
It’s an incredibly strong work, but what is truly remarkable is how well they have utilised the album’s guest appearances, with Steve Von Till (Neurosis) adding a brooding air of solemnity to “The Old Ones Are With Us” and Anna Von Hausswolf’s strangely formless voice adding delicacy and power to opener “Born From The Serpent’s Eye”. It’s executed with such organic flair that even the Coil-leaning tranquillity of “Mother Owl, Father Ocean” fits the album’s curious flow with ease. Even for iconoclasts like Wolves…, Thrice Woven is a brave move that never falters, never stumbles – it simply strides proudly forward.