Spanish Black Metallers Dantalion return with their ninth studio album, Fatum. “Fatum is the declaration of our comeback,” the band told us. “We are a Black Metal band with many years of experience, and we are all about it. We think this is our best work.”
Dantalion – Fatum (Non Serviam Records)
Release Date: 8 September 2023
Words: Jools Green
Fatum is a solid and impressively powerful offering, packed with emotion, delivered by their most consistent lineup in their nineteen-year history. They’ve had some pretty major lineup changes over the years.
It’s a classically styled Black Metal offering that concentrates on quality of composition, musicianship and delivery. On top of that, Sanguinist’s vocals are superb, well-ranging, often impressively protracted, filled with all manner of emotion and delivered with power and conviction.
The eight-track, forty-minute offering opens on Great Funeral Of Dawn. Its haunting build expands out to a plodding pace with reflective repeat riffing and acidic tortuous vocals, which become even more so as the pace quickens. A track that ebbs and builds in waves, reaching its zenith midway through with powerful screams and intense riffing. It is an absolutely magnificent start to the album.
Abyss Eating Serpent maintains and builds on the momentum and atmosphere created by the opening piece. It delivers more waves of intense riffs and tortuous vocals along with a superb haunting melody that courses beneath, dropping away dramatically midway through, building back up again in melancholic waves to the intensity and pace of the first half of the track with the return of that haunting melodic undercurrent.
Qayin Dominor Tumulus is a very dark, haunting piece punctuated with shouted, almost ritualistic vocals. The intense riffing builds and falls in bleak waves, the vocals becoming rawer and more acidic as the track progresses.
Novena Wake Begins was the first single released from the record back in July. “It is a direct song which shows the classic feeling delivered by the band,” Dantalion told us. “The melodic guitars mix darkness and melancholy with agonizing voices which remind you of necromantic rituals and the popular culture of Santa Muerte.” It’s an intense beast of a track from the offset, again with a melodic undercurrent of raw shouted vocals and a bleak hypnotic atmosphere.
Hades Visions is a slow, reflective piece with tortuous vocals set to the back of the sound, giving a haunting, distant feel. The pace does speed up as the track progresses, and the vocals become more tormented, adding an increased sense of bleak despair. It is a dramatic, understatedly powerful piece.
Exu King Of Souls Omulu is, for a brief moment, slow and reflective but rapidly takes off at a storming pace and develops some convolutedly complex riff work, which is stunningly good. A fascinatingly hypnotic track with superbly protracted tortuous vocals.
The shortest piece, the penultimate offering, Mortuary Song, is a reflective piano-led instrumental, setting the scene for the final piece, which is also the second single from the album, released in August.
Sounds Of Bells And Open Scissors burst forth with a wall of driving riffs and a bloodcurdling scream followed by harrowingly tormented vocals, ebbing and building in engaging waves. The constant factor of the ever-tormented vocals takes centre stage.
A gripping listen end to end, Fatum will be released as a digipak CD, green vinyl and a digital release.