Hellvetic Frost [Switzerland]
Towards a Distant World
With my recent encounter with Swiss bands, ranging from the cold and bleak Enoid to the more aggressive and oppressive Nihilo, my impression of bands out of the region has certainly skyrocketed. Hellvetic Frost is my latest discovery, and although Towards a Distant World is the band’s post-mortem release – the band disbanded in 2010 – they manage to impress me with the coldness and desolation that is contained on the album.
Kicking off the album with the ambient and almost doom-paced Einklang, the band sets the mood and the tone for the album, and seasoned fans of the genre will know what to expect for what’s to come on the rest of the album. Things get kicked up a notch soon enough with Zwang, and the rather raw and warm sound despite the heavy trem-picking utilised by guitarists Pagan Warrior and Grim, along with the heavy emphasis on the atmosphere, easily remind one of the earlier material of bands such as Darkthrone to even that of Finnish bands like Horna and Satanic Warmaster. This particularly so on tracks like Towards a Distant World, where the riffs of the band even evoke some sense of desperation within the listener.
At the same time, there is that slight pagan touch that is present throughout the album. Combined with the grimness emanated from Hellvetic Frost‘s outlook, there are even moments where one is reminded of the works of Bathory, like on Under the Sign of the Black Mark or Blood Fire Death.
Honestly, with the quality of the material on Towards a Distant World, it is indeed a shame that Hellvetic Frost was put to rest so quickly before gaining any form of recognition for their proficiency in the genre.