EMPYRIUM were a blackened folk/doom metal band from Germany that existed for 8 years from 1994 to 2002. During that time, they released 4 studio albums, with “Songs of Moors and Misty Fields” being their second, and in my opinion, their best release. It seamlessly combines the earlier, more metal material with their later, folkier albums.
The songs on this record are drenched in mournful atmosphere, and conjure up images of massive forests blanketed with fresh snow, untouched by the hands of men. With flutes, reverb-soaked keys, soaring lead guitars, operatic chants and croaks (reminiscent of Peter Steele, had he grown up in the Shire), black metal shrieks, and finger-picked acoustic interludes, EMPYRIUM’s songs are B-I-G. In fact, they are huge, and many are epic in length as well. And the band never has to resort to gimmicks, like full choruses, or orchestral arrangements, to achieve such a massive depth of sound.
If you thought TYPE O NEGATIVE were misery in music form, or that AGALLOCH had masterfully recreated a soundtrack for the woodlands, think again. EMPYRIUM are misery, naturalism, mournfulness, and introspection at its finest. “Songs of Moors and Misty Fields” is a staple of the atmospheric folk/doom genre, and I highly recommend it, and all of EMPYRIUM’s records. And from what I have read, the band is now back together, working on a new record, so now is the time to catch up on what you have been missing out on.