Ever since the release of their first demo tape back in 2016, HÄXENZIJRKELL marched on their very own path towards the bottomless pit of darkness. Raw and resolute black metal was the German duo's foundation; the mysteries of the beyond was their goal. And thirsty and miserable was that march, stridently suffocating the listener (and perhaps themselves) with epic-length screeds of despair and dread, culminating in two more EPs as well as split EPs with LVTHN and Brånd in 2019 and 2020, respectively.
Now, the bottom of that bottomless pit drops out completely, and the result is HÄXENZIJRKELL's long-awaited debut album, Die Nachtseite. Sonically consistent with their prior works yet wielding new twists to their trademark horror & howl, Die Nachtseite marks a further step: a ritual divided in three parts - the Path, the Flame, and the Awakening. Musically, the duo continue where the recent split with Brånd left off, building alternately dense/spacious soundwalls nevertheless staggeringly tall and menacing. Like past HÄXENZIJRKELL compositions, the three epics comprising the 37-minute album easily walk into double-digit length, and for good reason: their utterly sinister atmospheres envelop the listener like a slowly-moving, hauntingly-hovering fog. More immersive than ever, the duo's black metal becomes transcendental, so removed from - and aiming far beyond - regular, rote humanity. These are the echoes from the deepest pits of the Abyss!
photo credit: Sophia W.