Some releases go neglected upon release as their poor production makes it too hard to discern what is actually being played for those without neutral high-fidelity setups. Upon upgrading my own, I realized that Irillion’s debut Egledhron EP is one of them. The production is so muddy and filthy that even warm “audiophile” style setups have a hard time discerning what the downtuned and distorted electric guitars are playing. While two earlier Sadistic Metal Reviews from our staff noted the recording as a promising but inferior, listening on a more revealing setup reveals Irillion’s self-recorded musical intentions and goals: Irillion wish to play flowing Eastern European black metal like Graveland with a filthy Joined in Darkness era Demoncy style production and atmosphere and an almost Transilvanian Hunger manner of variation.
Irillion succeed on Egledhron and almost successfully completes a concept album. After the short “Turpial” intro track, “Tierra Negra (part 1)” opens with a great, tremolo picked black metal riff set to martial percussion that progresses over the course of the composition to martial war drums, producing a slow marching forward beat like a line of infantry marching forward into the test of battle and the divine judgement of life or death. The second half the track changes riffs to survey the carnage of fallen warriors corpses being devoured by carrion as the survivors march off to fight another day. The third track, “La lucha del Catatumbo” starts almost as an extended doomy and classical guitar bridge like Condor before the black metal epic to conclusion in bittersweet triumph. “Tierra Negra (part 2) effectively reconstitutes the theme of part one and fades out. Tierra Negra works as a three track, almost symphonic requiem.
An almost ambient interlude sets apart the title track “Egledhron”, which is more of the same style as “Tierra Negra” but with more violent, Darkthrone-influenced riffing and cavernous production as if from a different recording session. The composition is still an effective conclusion to the extended ones that preceded. Egledhron is a worthy purchase for those with neutral, not warmed-over speaker and open headphone setups. Irillion could improve future works though by integrating the various guitar styles (including classical) together and having even a semi-professional production so their music does not end up as mere stained wallpaper for headbangers listening on typical consumer systems.