Birdless Heavens

1. Valedictory Hymn
2. The First Wintry Touches
3. This Light And Joyous Death
4. Beldam-Snowstorm
5. The Sit’-River
6. The Prophetic
7. Soon, Very Soon!

Pan - gvocal, flute
Jaromir - guitar, vocal
Kolyado - guitar
Peresvet - bass-guitar
Michail Romanov - folk instruments
Vladimir - drums
Pustosvyat - music, arrangements

2005 Legend / Wolfen Loyalty [split with KRODA]
2008 ...Z Mroku... / The Fireflower [split with CHUR]
2010 North The Boundless
2012 Triunity [split with PIAREVARACIEN and CHUR]



Released 2013-01-31
Reviewed 2013-02-27

casus belli musica

Russian band Oprich is somewhat known for the regular reader of Hallowed, we did review them last year when they appeared on the Triunity split where they shared the spotlight with two other bands. Now they are for the second time standing on their own feet, they have been releasing stuff since 2005 when they released their first split with Kroda, they have since then released two more splits and a full length album which saw light of day 2010. Their new album is called Birdless Heavens and is as seems to be the case with this band in reality sung in Russian and I suppose they use those letters to match as well but for our benefit they have translated the titles to English so that we non-Russians can understand what they are sining about. One more thing to mention is that they have a good looking album cover with this bird and this sense of darkness that accompanies it.

It is folk rock or perhaps folk metal it is generally quite calm and it is spiced up with flutes and other folkish instruments, not particularly heavy but well produced and with very prominent melodies. The drums is a bit of a strange thing here, they are there but not quite there in the regards that they are mixed very low which i think does give this atmospheric feel. The songs are sung in Russian which I think feels a bit unusual to listen to, the language does not feel as lyrical as English or even German and I think that it reminds more of Finnish or something like that as a language for singing. The song is not overly varied either but there are some growly stuff so not completely monotone either and the singer is decent. The album in itself is quite varied in style and and compositions, it gives the sense of early springtime when the ice is just about to break from the lakes and the sun is warming up the otherwise cold world.

I think that overall this is a good album the melodies are nice and the songs are overall quite alright. For me there is a bit of a but, however, and that is the language which I think is a bit detrimental to the overall picture of this album. The songs starts loosing this feel and the flow when the vocals begin, not because of the vocalist being bad as I think he has a voice well suited for this kind of music, it is just that the vocals sounds wrong and that I still think despite having given this album something like ten listens now. Maybe it is because I do not understand the words but it might that the language is just not suited for this kind of music, this may of course only be down to me and my language preferences.

If you like folk rock or folk metal you should have a look at this as the language might not be the same thing for you as it is for me. Other than the language it is a good album, the melodies are strong and lovely and I think that if it had been sung in a another language it would have been a fairly strong album. And that is why we can conclude that had it not been for my language prejudice it would have been a fairly good album, but to me it just don’t do it as it is but if you like this kind of music you might disagree. I think it would work better if I knew russian.



Label: Casus Belli Musica/Infektion PR
Three similar bands: Nachtgeschrei/Pierevaracien/Chur
Rating: HHHHHHH (3/7)
Reviewer: Daniel Källmalm

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