It seems that with all the futuristic-sounding music I've been into lately that it was a bit difficult for me to really dive into something a bit more primal. Eventually, though, I was worn down, and was finally able to give The Divination of Antiquity a fair listen. That turned into several listens of the whole album, back to back, over and over. As I write this I am on my second listen today, and it will probably be spinning all day to commemorate the coldest day of the Autumn so far.

Atmospheric metal doesn't give you the same instant ear-candy payoff that the more flashy, pop-hook laden or super heavy, detuned breakdown-ridden styles do. It takes a little bit more work, and sometimes, less, and a lot of patience on both the band and listeners' part. I found that I enjoyed this album more when listening to it passively; while cleaning the house, or driving. Certain parts jumped out more at me when I wasn't trying to hear them, if that makes any sense. The somber beauty reflected here isn't always in your face, sometimes it's more subtle, which, in turn, makes you want to go back and try to hear it again.

The mood that The Divination of Antiquity creates is palpable. You can practically feel it in your hands. The cold mists of England cross your cheeks and the vastness of the Earth makes you feel ephemeral and small. There are some deep choral vocals here and there that enhance that effect, and even a few gentle passages that remind one of a quiet snowfall. Then there are times when it rages helplessly against the inexorable forces of time and nature, seeming to flame out like a firefly that strikes your windshield. It makes you feel colder, more resolved, and passionate at the same time. I didn't read the lyrics and I don't know the subject matter but the music itself screams at me-

We will not be here forever.

It's no surprise that I love this album. If I had any reservations it would be that on the surface, it does at times sound very close to Wolves in the Throne Room with better production, but I'm not listening to this because it's strikingly original, I'm enjoying this because it's really good and it stirs up emotions and makes me space out and think about... well... everything. It's heavy in that sense, not brutal, but just really big, and I love hearing music that reminds me that we are nothing and everything simultaneously.