…zum Tode hin was the most pleasant surprise of 2009. Like Turisas in 2007 and Nekrogoblikon in 2011, Finsterforst managed to rise from the depths of mediocrity to greatness in a single album. I’d spun Weltenkraft often enough to know them when I heard them, but there was absolutely nothing special about it. I only grabbed …zum Tode hin in the first place because I was very actively keeping up with metal in general at the time, and it ended up on my top 10 list come the end of the year.
…zum Tode hin adopts a folk-black sound which should immediately appeal to fans of Moonsorrow, while maintaining the strong emphasis on accordion that characterized Weltenkraft. But unlike Moonsorrow (at least for me), Finsterforst’s melodies are extraordinarily memorable. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve got Urquell stuck in my head, and this never proves a nuisance. Looking over my 2009 list again, …zum Tode hin is fairly unique in having stood the test of time. I still have yet to grow tired of listening to it.
Finsterforst are a German band that formed in 2004. Their name means “dark forest”. The album title translates to “Towards Death”, and this particular track to “Original Source”. They haven’t released an album since …zum Tode hin, and singer Marco Schomas has since left the band. That’s a bit disconcerting, because his vocals fit their style perfectly, but the good news is a new record’s finally on its way. “Rastlos” should be available by November 27th. Cheers.