One of the negative aspects of being more or less submerged by material from all over the globe is to risk neglecting records of great value: that’s why we find ourselves talking about this second album by Russian Grima, eight months after its release despite proving to be, when all is said and done, one of the best atmospheric black metal albums released during the year. After all, we should also trust the labels that promote these works, in this case the Naturmacht that objectively misses very few shots: here, however, the center is full, because Tales Of The Enchanted Woods is one of the freshest and most exciting expressions of the genre that we have been given the opportunity to listen to in recent times. Grima is a Siberian duo formed by the twins Gleb and Maxim Sysoev (members of Ultar), here under the nicknames Vilhelm and Morbius, which annihilate and excite with their epic and majestic black metal, able to take the best from the Scandinavian and German scene, injecting a dreamy cascadian component, beautiful folk veins thanks to the inclusion of the accordion and a poisonous scream that partially refers to Cradle Of Filth. All these components blend to perfection giving life to a work that develops on five main tracks plus three instrumentals; if the listening, as sometimes happens, starts a bit distracted, Grima takes little time to catalyze the attention with a great song like The Moon And Its Shadows and, later, with the masterpiece Ritual, with its huge evocative load due to an amazing ability of the duo to create melodies of rare solemnity. Never Get Off The Trail, The Grief (with guitar textures that illuminate the final), The Shepherds Of The Mountains And Plains are other pearls that transport the listener inside the majestic and felid Siberian forests, protected by a spirit that protects its inhabitants and severely punishes those who do not respect the animal and plant life forms (perhaps it’s the only kind of deity we really need). Grima gives almost three quarters of an hour of dark and atmospheric magnificence, with an inspiration and a freshness that makes them overcome some small smears and the absence of a real drummer. Ineffectiveness, if compared to the overall value of a work that pierces the veil on the talent of these two guys, for whom I like to think that the common feeling caused by their twin condition has really made a difference.

2017 – Naturmacht Productions