Beauty is in the eye of the beholder, so the saying goes. A black heart can only find beauty in darkness, goes the other saying. Olvar is an amazing and unique band playing a style of atmospheric black metal that is wholly unique. The music flows from one song to the next with grace that is not common with black metal bands. Even though there is grace and feeling, Olvar still maintains the intensity and the rage that is so prevalent in black metal. Many bands do not know how to use any emotion but anger in their music, Olvar utilizes many in the notes and the stories the music tell.
While the band is completely instrumental I consider them a Tolkien metal band. Why? Olvar is a Quenya, Tolkien’s greatest linguistic creation, word that refers to trees, plants, and things that take root and grow.
Olvar takes that image, nature at its most primal and honest, and creates a savage ode to it. Olvar gives a voice to the emotions and pain the plants and trees that cannot speak for themselves. Olvar creates music that spans ages and worlds.
This album is a gem, one of those bands that appear, shimmering for half a heartbeat before they disappear in the muck. One has to be watchful because oft times those gems are never seen again.
The entire album is technically proficient, the musicality and the artistry that the two members of the band display on the album is top notch, the production is clean yet primal, fitting for the theme of the band. The approach is pretty simplistic but the band does it beautifully. They take a lot of old tropes, grand sounding titles about iciness and darkness, sweeping, blazing fast guitars and cavernous drums, and alter them just enough that they are not exactly the same as all the other bands out there. Olvar is a beautiful band that gives an amazing, visceral voice to something ancient, just like Tolkien’s Ents, Olvar is adding a layer to the natural world.
Listen and support!