For the most part, Solstafir’s seventh full-length album follows in the footsteps of its predecessor, 2017’s Berdreyminn (Season of Mist). The songwriting still largely favors the band’s subdued side with influences ranging from Post Punk, Prog Rock, and Ambient greatly informing the Post Metal whole. Tracks like ‘Rokkur’ and ‘Her Fall From Grace’ are heavy on atmosphere with extensive space to breathe and ‘Or’ throws a curveball with its almost Jazz-tinged rhythms.
But rather than completely giving way to that softness, Endless Twilight Of Codependent Love (Season Of Mist) also sees flashes of the band’s heavier tendencies bursting through. There’s not much that approaches a full return to their Black Metal roots, but the opening ‘Akkeri’ and ‘Dionysus’ bring on some heavier riffing onslaughts that are met with harsher vocals and blasting drums. It’s also nice to see the Gothic influence on ‘Alda Syndanna’ and the atmospheric wandering on the closing ‘Ulfur’ get a few extra hits of power.
The cold atmosphere that has come to define each Solstafir release serves as a strong unifier. The production is very balanced, allowing each instrument to stand out with vibrant polish but never undermining the bleakness. The guitars and drums do a brilliant job across every mood with the bass maintaining a solid presence. The vocals also prove to be quite solid; as much as I find myself wishing they had some extra bite during the more aggressive sequences, their vulnerability serves the softer songs quite well with plenty of beautifully memorable lines to go around.
Overall, Solstafir’s melancholic Post Metal formula is at its most balanced and fine-tuned with Endless Twilight Of Codependent Love. While it does lean more on the restrained side, their melodic and heavier aspects are integrated smoothly. There’s a healthy distribution of moods across the album with healthy dynamic fluctuations that are strengthened by the top-notch musicianship. It may not be as groundbreaking as their earlier outings, but it stands up to them well in terms of quality.
9 / 10