Album Review: SECOND TO SUN – The Black

Second To Sun 2018

Lately quite some bands showed that the things in post-”anything”-metal are not said and done yet, and one of most important representatives of this are Russian trio SECOND TO SUN. I must admit that this new album of theirs is my first encounter with this extraordinary band, although they have been releasing music since 2012. In fact, the album we have here was previously released as an instrumental album “Blackbound”, but due to the group introducing a vocalist some time ago, SECOND TO SUN re-released it under the new name “The Black.”

Second to Sun - The Black“The Black” is a very complex album combining many different elements into one highly atmospheric, emotional and coherent sonic form which shines right because of its refined versatility. In its basis SECOND TO SUN deal with post-metal, black metal and melodic groove metal; I can say that it’s like a missing link between early Alcest, Katatonia, Emperor, Darkthrone, and Agalloch to name a few, but they implement their atmospheric sound with small amounts of djent, ambient and prog metal. It can be so very dense, extreme and powerful, but also so very soothing, melancholic, almost gentle, often very rhythmic but performed with amazing technical and compositional skill, with a delicate feeling for sensitivity.

Musically SECOND TO SUN on this album shows improvement if compared to their debut album “The First Chapter”, they really did big things on this one. With constantly very captivating melodic lines, powerful drumming, intense guitar riffs, leads and bass lines, and of course throughout very strong vocals, the band is weaving crushing heaviness and atmospheric dreaminess in the album that portrays an emotional journey.

The whole structure of “The Black” and its eleven tracks has some kind of an interesting pathos that goes from more complex progressive parts, to dreamy atmospheric soundscapes, aggressive but harmonic escapades, sometimes almost avantgardish song structures, until reaching the absolute climax. It is a musical universe set for the discovery of one’s deepest thoughts and the soul that rests in each of us.

“The Black” is a real masterpiece from every possible aspect, not only from musical side, which is so very dynamic, sometimes lush and solemn, but as well the marginal things like, for example, the artwork which is absolutely stunning and deepens the whole adventure this album offers. SECOND TO SUN‘s “The Black” is an outstanding symbiosis of many facets, it needs a huge talent of every involved musician to create such a mesmerizing sonic amalgam that will take the one who dares to enter its realms onto a voyage full of beauty, emotion and immense darkness in and above us.

“The Black” is out now; check it out on Bandcamp, and follow SECOND TO SUN on Facebook and Instagram.