Ewiges Eis 2011

This 4 song debut EP from Norway's Masteriis has been hotly anticipated by me.  It combines elements from several well established Norwegian acts and sews them together in a manner that is strong and confident.  The first track is Svopt I Tiden and you can hear a similarity initially to a less groove oriented Khold.  Melodic Nordic riffs surface in the faster region of the song and the clean guitar passages captivate me with hints of Katatonia and Stormblast era Dimmu Borgir surfacing.  This is especially true during the clean guitar part at the 4:53 mark which starts in a Dimmu manner and then halfway through transitions to the sorrowful loneliness of Katatonia.  Blasting and cold black metal whirls forth like a tempest as the title-track begins.  The track drifts into slower melodic regions as the composition progresses.  Once again, a hint of sorrow permeates the music.  Forlatt hammers with rapid-fire drums and slightly disharmonic riffs.  A familiar coldness stirs within the song though I cannot quite place my finger on who it is reminding me of.  The shrill, crystalline guitar that arcs into the song at the 2:50 mark adds a chilling effect to the overall pulse of the track.  The EP closes with the methodically paced Into Infinite Darkness.  More melodic clean guitars drift in like snowflakes throughout the song and continue to freeze the song until its abrupt end.  Ramnsvarturh's vocals are grim and traditional when it comes to black metal shrieks and are perfectly suited to the Norwegian lyrics.  Masteriis delivers an EP of strong yet traditional Norwegian black metal with a leaning towards Dimmu without being synth oriented.  And that is where I hear Tulus and Khold arise within the frozen mixture.  I am very pleased with this EP and am already craving a full length from Masteriis.  Stand and deliver!