2011 IN REVIEW: Wolves In the Throne Room, ‘Celestial Lineage’

Like most serious music fans, self-titled spends most days devouring records across hard drives, streaming services and our trusty office turntable. That’s why we’re devoting the next month to deconstructing LPs we loved from throughout the year. Here’s one of them:

The Artist/Album: Wolves In the Throne Room, Celestial Lineage (Southern Lord, 2011)

Why It’s Worth Hearing: The final installment of an increasingly ambitious trilogy, Celestial Lineage also happens to be the furthest Wolves In the Throne Room strays from a traditional black-metal template. Between all of the creaking wind chimes, forested field recordings, flint-scraping synths and neo-classical nods, it’s as if the reclusive Weaver brothers suddenly realized that Popol Vuh and Werner Herzog’s work on Aguirre, the Wrath of God was as KVLT as anything Burzum or Emperor have ever cooked up. Bringing Jessika Kenney (see also: crucial collaborations with Sunn O))) and Eyvind Kang) back into the fold for more choral lines than ever before only serves to ground this recording even deeper into a world only Wolves In the Throne Room truly understand.

Check your preconceptions at the door and listen all the way through. The result errs on the right side of pure transcendence.

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