Evilnox – “The Return To Ancient Lands” (Reissue) Album Review (dungeon synth/medieval)

a1740592230_16To the Sunday Dungeon we go as we explore The Return To Ancient Lands (Reissue) from Russia’s Evilnox.  For those of you unaware, Russia is putting out some bloody amazing dark ambient and dungeon synth work.  This is no exception.  

From Bandcamp: “In ancient dungeons, music used to sound, now only the damp and thawed waters.The world as you loved it will never become the same and sometimes it seems that it is better to awaken the sleeping ancient evil than to live in deceit and deceit.”

The Return To Ancient Lands is a 15-track digital-only album that presents itself as a bit of a modern dungeon synth take with a polite nod to the artists and days of old.  Mixing studio-perfect dungeon synth with hinges of medieval, neo-classical and dark ambient, sole-member Rux guides listeners through 15 separate scenes on the same adventure.  “When Silver Horn Calling To War,” the opening track brings to mind the 2 albums created by Burzum while in prison (Daudi Baldrs and Hlidskjalf) but then develops into a small flurry of authentic-sounding violins/violas.

“Pagan Dance For April Moon” bears more of a resemblance to medieval/Renaissance music while “Blood of Heretic Kings” makes use of harpsichord, bells and strings giving it an old-world feel.  Also making use of harpsichord but giving an unusually uplifting feel is “Cold Light Of Forest Stars.”  “Sabbat” shows more of the dark ambient dynamic of the album with tribal sounding percussion to go along.  “Cult of Fire” brings to mind the work of Mortiis (old-Mortiis, that is) or Sopor Aeternus.  These of course are just a few examples giving you an idea of what Evilnox is capable of.  

At the end of the day you have a very dynamic album capable of pleasing fans of dungeon synth, dark ambient and neo-classical.  I’d highly recommend checking out the other records he has to offer as well.



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