Dutch black metal band Funeral Winds has returned with a new full album entitled Stigmata Mali. This marks the seventh full album release by sole member Hellchrist Xul. As a fan of their previous two albums, Gruzelementen and Essence, I’m eager to hear what this new album has to offer.
The Stigmata of Evil
The new album was released on February 24th, 2023, and is now available on Bandcamp in digital format, CD, vinyl, and tape. The album exudes a strong 90s black metal vibe and truly means business. The vocals, in particular, stand out as the highlight of the album. They are raw and aggressive, perfectly capturing the dark essence of black metal, as one would expect from a band that plays this genre.
Hateful, raw and Satanic… Black Metal the way it was meant to be!Funeral Winds Bandcamp
There are 8 tracks and the total runtime of the album is almost 35 minutes.
- Open the Wounds
- Stigmata Mali
- By these Hands, by Your Command
- Odious Emanations
- The Angles of Darkness
- Ferocious Revelations
- Purified by Acausal Flames
- The Bornless Forever
The Angles of Darkness” is the fifth track on the new album and the first standout for me. Clocking in at just over three minutes, it kicks off with relentless drums that sound like machine guns, accompanied by Hellchrist’s vicious and malevolent vocals. This track perfectly encapsulates the ’90s black metal vibe, with no compromises and raw black metal at its purest form.
Galloping steeds amongst black scorched chapels of doom The Heralds of Satan’s might ride amongst the flames of Hell Through sulphurous smoke and ravenous consuming fire We chant our Hateful verses against our adversaries Legions of Damnation Brought forth from the womb of Lilith
My second highlight from the album is the seventh track, “Purified by Acausal Flames”. It begins with the same thunderous drums, resembling machine guns firing, which is a sound I personally enjoy. Although the tempo does slow down at times, the overall feeling of the song remains relentless and determined.
While the other songs on the album share the same style, these two tracks stand out for me. However, one downside of this style of black metal is that it can become somewhat generic after a while. While this is not necessarily a bad thing, I tend to switch to another album after listening to it once through.
Overall, I enjoyed the album despite feeling that it can be somewhat generic at times. However, this is not necessarily a negative attribute. I’m eager to see what Hellchrist has in store for his eighth album. If you appreciate raw, malevolent black metal with a ’90s vibe, then I highly recommend giving this album a try. You can do so by checking out the Black Metal Promotion premiere below.
If you like it, then buy it in your preferred format on Bandcamp and support the artist!