‘The Winter Way’ Could Be Atavistia’s Breakout Record

Courtesy: Dewar PR/Atavistia

Independent symphonic metal outfit Atavistia is scheduled to release its new album The Winter Way Friday.  The seven-song record is the group’s sophomore outing and will be self-released by the Canadian quartet.  It is a work that will appeal to fans of similar acts, such as Ensiferum, Wintersun and Dialith, looking solely at its musical arrangements.  The lyrical themes that accompany the noted musical content add even more to the engagement that the 61-minute record ensures.  Together, the noted elements make The Winter Way a work that holds its own against its more well-known melodic metal counterparts.  That is proven in part through the record’s first full song, ‘The Atavistic Forest.’  It will be addressed shortly.  ‘Eternal Oceans’ is yet another example of what makes Atavistia’s latest album stand out, and will be discussed a little later.  The album’s closer and title track is one more example of how the record proves its strength in the overall melodic metal realm.  When all three of these songs are considered along with the LP’s other songs, the album in whole proves to be the record that could help Atavistia become one of the genre’s next big names.

Atavistia’s new album The Winter Way is a record to which melodic metal fans will quickly warm up upon hearing.  That is proven from start to end of the 61-minute record because of its combined musical and lyrical content, as is proven in part through the album’s first full musical/lyrical track, ‘The Atavistic Forest.’  The musical arrangement at the center of this song forms a strong foundation for its presentation through itself and its production.  The balance of front man Mattias Sippola’s screams and clean vocals couples with the song’s backing choral vocals to make for its own powerful impact on the song.  The juxtaposition of the string arrangements and the song’s heavier, guitars and subtle drumming of Dalton Meaden and Max Sepulveda respectively adds even more punch to the song’s arrangement.  Sepulveda’s work is balanced expertly throughout this work, serving as more of an accent to the whole than its own entity, yet it works so well.  Meaden’s guitar work meanwhile works with the strings and bassist Dwayne Murray’s own work to flesh out the arrangement even more.  The whole of these elements makes the song itself such a powerful musical presentation that succeeds on its own merits.  It is just one part of what makes the song stand out, though.  The song’s lyrical content works with its musical counterpart to make the song’s impact even more so.

The lyrical content featured in ‘The Atavistic Forest’ will ensure its own engagement among audiences.  The writing here is rather cryptic, coming across like some sort of work having fantastical roots.  This is inferred as Sippola sings in the song’s lead verse, “From the ancient stones/I walk through the shadows/Orchestrations of life/Deemed a separate path/With my hands I embrace the circle of life/Caressed by spirits once through death/Haunting silence dwells upon this starlit forest/Creatures from the dark soon bear witness to the sun/Condemn those without my whisper by their side/Release my mind from echoes of madness/This cold layer of ice shall never thaw/My ark embrace will never die.”  He continues in the song’s second verse, “The hourglass of time follows us through the stars/The howling winds of old carried through the misty trees/My eyes behold no sign of life/Staring down to darkness/Dreams besiege the fallen star among the dead/We are reclaiming this land/For the transcending matter/No more relinquishing worlds/Calling us to our home/Fallen stone/Take my throne/I am the past/I am the future/Lost in my chambers/Now treading behind/Falling back to shadows/Where no light survives/Drifting realms beneath my surface.”  It should be noted here that this song comes in at just under nine minutes, and it continues in much the same fashion lyrically as it progresses as presented here.  There is a lot of very goth-esque language used throughout the song, including in the noted lines and those not noted.  To that end, such content will appeal to a very targeted listener.  Even with that in mind, the song’s musical arrangement will still find its own wide appeal, making up for the targeted appeal of the lyrics.  Keeping this in mind, this song shows in its own way, the ability of The Winter Way to connect with listeners.  It is just one of the songs that serves to show why The Winter Way proves to work just as well as albums from Atavistia’s more well-known counterparts.  ‘Eternal Oceans’ is another way in which the album proves its strength.

‘Eternal Oceans’ stands out because its arrangement is so distinctly unlike that of the album’s other songs.  It is a work that even with its orchestral addition, feel more like it adds a progressive metal element to its whole.  The use and balance of the guttural vocals and the clean singing adds even more impact to its whole.  Between all of that and the way in which the drums were once again incorporated in to the song, the arrangement in whole makes for another very powerful musical presentation that, as with ‘The Atavistic Forest’ will reach a wide range of metal fans.  Now the matter of the song’s lyrical content is another issue.  It will create its own unique share of interesting.

Sippola sings in the song’s lead verse, “Ice forms beneath the stars/Blind reflections clear/Forsaken lands under the moon dying/Howl from the wolf/Soon to be silent/With no air to inhale/Requesting to lay dormant/Beyond the ever fading light/Follow us through the stars/With our sorrow/Drowning us far below/Beyond the light/In the darkness I fall/With no ending/tearing out from the stars/Into eternal oceans.”  He continues from there, “Forever to wander/I feel its presence like never before/The sorrowing oceans rains down around me/Tearing out from the stars/Along the cosmic sea/One by one/The branches fell/Calling forth/The observer of life/In the ancient kingdoms/Where the souls lay void by fire/Cosmic entities of yore shall rise once again.”  As the 10-minute-plus song continues through its second half, Sippola continues his highly metaphorical language, which leads to plenty of its own interest and discussion.  Considering the engagement and discussion that the song’s lyrical content will generate and the interest that the song’s musical arrangement will ensure, the combination of the elements makes the song in whole yet another example of what makes The Winter Way proves it strength.  It is just one more of the songs that serves said purpose, too.  The album’s closer, which is also its title track, is one more way in which the album shows its potential.

‘The Winter Way’ opens with a very soft, melancholy style approach that is driven largely by its keyboard and string lines.  That brooding opening gives way quickly to a full-on orchestral metal approach that wastes no time capturing listeners’ ears.  That powerful, yet still melancholy instrumentation continues through to the end of the nearly 10-minute opus.  Coupled with Sippola’s vocal delivery, which lends itself ironically to comparisons to Fear Factory front man Burton C. Bell’s more melodic vocal performances, the whole of the song’s arrangement offers its own unique presentation that a wide range of audiences will appreciate.  That melancholy sound couples with the song’s equally moody lyrical content to make that element engaging in its own right, albeit to a very targeted audience, once again.

Sippola sings in the song’s lead verse, “For so long/I have become so cold/So cold far down below the icy fields of snow/Silence follows me through the night/When the ice beneath my feet breaks away/Will I go with you now/To forever walk your path of snow/You are the starlight/The everlasting memory/And I will follow you/In darkness/To our destiny/As I lay awake/I feel your presence near/And if I am to fade tonight/Having you brings me no fear/When we close our eyes/Nothing’s left behind/Now I’ve come for you/And your cold winds pass through my mind.”  The song continues very much in the same fashion from here, lyrically speaking.  It is very much a goth type work in its approach that again will appeal to a very targeted audience.  Together with the other songs addressed here and the rest of the album’s works, the album proves in whole to be a work that given the right support, will become potentially become a breakout work for Atavistia.

Atavistia’s sophomore album The Winter Way is a record to which metal fans across the board will likely warm up when they take in its 61-minute body.  That is due to its musical arrangements, which actually cover much ground within metal’s various subgenres.  The lyrics will have a much more distinct appeal with a more targeted audience.  That is proven through all three of the songs addressed here.  When those songs are considered along with the rest of the album’s works, the record in whole proves to be an interesting work from Atavistia that, given the right support, could make the band one of metal’s next big names.  More information on The Winter Way is available along with all of the band’s latest news at:










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