Although this album has already been appropriately reviewed, a few notes come to mind when contemplating it after having it in rotation for a few months: this is the best Goatcraft release so far, and fans who defend it as intuitive and critics who say it lacks epic and distinctive melodies both make good points.
Yersinia Pestis very much feels like a work of a composer feeling out mood more than structure, and then filling in with interstitial work in order to achieve a metal-style riff mesh. As a result, there are not haunting ur-motives as occur in the Burzum work, but more like bands such as Jaaportit or Neptune Towers this aims for the interplay between many shorter riffs to create a coloring and texture, leaving the conclusion to the listener.
This album makes more effective use of accompanying instrumentation and gets beyond the dominance of technique that slowed down earlier Goatcraft works. Composition is clear without redundancies, and aims to return to theme frequently enough to be comprehensible, but expand toward the classical idea of internal development which fleshes out form. In this case, the structure of each song is ad hoc to some degree based on the mood it invokes.
While this will not appeal to the blood ‘n’ guts metal crowd, and this author is a member of that group most of the time, it has its charms as a work of highly idiosyncratic and yet honest music even if somewhat muted in articulation, more like an impressionistic painting than a formal letter. It does not achieve the sigil-like distinctiveness of Burzum ambient compositions, but does not aim for that either. Instead, it is a discourse in the mind which aims for a realistic internal logic to make sense of a surge of emotions.