SAD - Misty Breath Of Ancient Forests

In this new album, "Misty Breath Of Ancient Forests", SAD, has released a forceful project in the tradition of the best black metal. The drums are blasting from the start and the vocals do not sink below the force set up in the music – they really mix well with the entire album’s energy.

For instance, the opening track, ‘Self Hatred,’ features very fast drums and ridiculously rapid tremolo riffs – and the vocals layer in with a nearly desperate tone, one in which the voice almost breaks in pain. I feel this opening was bold, yes, but also revealed a vulnerability. Especially after the rhythm changes and the guitar switches into different chords and then at the, about 3:50 left-to-go mark, the pace picks back up again. The track works in totality from start to finish.

The second track, ‘Enjoy Your Pettiness,’ features a different attitude. The opening emphasizes long drawn out vocals and the guitar takes a melancholy turn by moving to increased use of higher notes on the guitar. In some cases, this would seem a happier tone, but in this album, with the vocals used as they are, it definitely is sadder.

The third and sixth tracks make up part 1 and 2 of the album’s title tracks, ‘Misty Breath Of Ancient Forests,’ and are fantastic. The vocals are super consistent throughout – and part 1 opens with the more folkish part of the album – the sound of rain. I mean, the album is called "Misty Breath Of Ancient Forests" after all. Some of the vocals evoke some Burzum wailing – but not directly. I think I just mention this because at the beginning of the review, I mentioned that this album sits squarely in the black metal genre. Part 2 takes a whole different opening, focusing on the chord and strum. The rhythm adds super texture and does not even include vocals for almost a minute into it. It is so simple structurally – but really emotional as a result. I really liked part 2.

I am fairly new to SAD, but this album will not disappoint their fans. It is a worthwhile effort in their style and tradition.

4.5 / 5 STARS 


1. Self Hatred
2. Enjoy Your Pettiness
3. Misty Breath Of Ancient Forests (Part I)
4. White Death
5. Hellish Ride
6. Misty Breath Of Ancient Forests (Part II)
7. Hades Gazing