SÓLSTAFIR – Ótta

solstafir.ottaLeave it to the Icelandic post-apocalyptic cowboys, SÓLSTAFIR, to reward their fans with a godly follow up to their godly album, Svartir Sandir.  This time around, the band only release a single disc’s worth of music but it’s more than adequate.  Their unique style of dark/atmospheric metal rises to new levels here.

The one characteristic that stands out the most on Ótta is how powerfully the band utilizes quiet and gentle atmospheres.  Additionally, there are song sections where they could easily crash in with a wall of heaviness but the band choose to pull back.  This actually results in keeping the tension and mood while also keeping listeners on their toes.  Most importantly, SÓLSTAFIR‘s soulfulness and honesty is right up there with ANATHEMA, IN THE WOODS…, and PRIMORDIAL.

The journey that is Ótta can best be summarized by how it begins and ends.  “Lágnætti” starts things off with quiet pianos, Aðalbjörn “Addi” Tryggvason‘s heartfelt vocals, and the beautiful string orchestra.  Once the post-punk basslines and pounding drum beat comes in with the massive whale siren calls of the guitars, the intensity truly gets epic.  Closer “Náttmál” is equally soulful and beautiful.  The push and pull of the song is extremely compelling and it builds up to an epic descrescendo.  It is the crashing of glacier-sized emotions.  Awesome.

In a genre where being soulless and forgettable is the norm, SÓLSTAFIR are truly saviors.  There’s a reason why there are one of the best bands on the planet.  (Season of Mist)

SÓLSTAFIR’s Next Religious Experience Arriving this June

Icelandic heathens SÓLSTAFIR are back with a new album. The highly anticipated follow-up to 2011’s much praised Svartir Sandar is entitled Ótta and has been scheduled for an August 29th release (September 2nd in North America).

As the name suggests, Ótta will include eight songs, which titles will be unveiled later in June. Pre-orders will start on Season of Mist‘s e-shop on June 10th.

Two-disc reissue of SÓLSTAFIR’s debut album Í Blóði Og Anda is also available on Season of Mist‘s e-shop.

SOLSTAFIR Finally Set for First North American Tour

Iceland’s best metal export SÓLSTAFIR have announced that they will finally be touring North America for the first time.  The only downside is that it’s strictly an East Coast tour.  JUNIUS will be the opening band, which makes for a very cool touring combo.  The tour starts May 15, 2014 in Toronto and concludes at the glorious Maryland Deathfest on May 23, 2014.

In other news, the band recently wrapped up the recording sessions in Studio Sundlaugin for their upcoming album.  Check out photos on their Facebook page.  It should be a damn good album.

Reissue of SOLSTAFIR’s Debut Album Available Now

The reissue of Icelandic rock heathens SÓLSTAFIR’s debut full-length, Í Blóði Og Anda (In Blood and Spirit), is now out everywhere. The whole album and its bonus disc, as well as the band’s magnum opus ‘Svartir Sandar’, are streaming at Bandcamp.

Originally released in 2002, Í Blóði Og Anda is SÓLSTAFIR‘s long-lost debut album. A far cry from the refined and expressive post-rock of 2011′s Svartir Sandar, Í Blóði Og Anda is a mix of black metal and crust. The album went out-of-print almost immediately upon its release, and has been out of circulation ever since. The album is now remastered, repackaged, and includes a bonus second disc full of previously unreleased material.

Tickets for Extreme Metal Cruise, Barge to Hell, on Sale Now

The world’s first extreme metal cruise, Barge to Hell, featuring 40 bands of extreme metal’s best bands is set to depart from Miami, Florida on December 3, 2012 for Nassau, Bahamas and back on December 7, 2012.  Tickets are now on sale.  The luxury cruise will feature two performances from each band on three different stages, karaoke, and more.

So far 21 out of a total of 40 bands on board are known:

ARTILLERY
AT THE GATES
BELPHEGOR
ENSLAVED
HACKNEYED
HYPOCRISY
KAMPFAR
KRISIUN
LOUDBLAST
MOONSPELL
MORGOTH
PARADISE LOST
POSSESSED
ROTTING CHRIST
SACRED REICH
SANCTUARY
SEPULTURA
SIX FEET UNDER
SODOM
SOILWORK
SOLSTAFIR