In Tha Umbra - Noire

One of the longest running black-metal acts crawling through the Portuguese underground, In Tha Umbra have been around for 15 years now, always doing their own thing with little concern for trends or side-ways evolution. Or at least, that was the notion I had of this four-piece before I listened to this stopgap EP. “Noire” really shattered my perception of In Tha Umbra as it reveals the group’s penchant for giving their new compositions a slightly progressive bent. I confess that I’m not familiar with their previous album "Thus Open Thine Eerie Wings Like An Eagle And Soar The Winds Of Chaos" (it’s moments like these that I’m glad not be doing radio) yet I do remember reading something along the line of branching into areas other than death or black. And those lines now ring true ‘cause “Noire” does show a more adventurous song-writing, specially the new themes "Intangível" and "The Weight of Fire Shall Harvest the Wine of Twilight". Describing the two as "blackened death" is not totally inaccurate, but it does not tell the whole story, there are some progressive-inspired melodies woven into the songs, relatively similar to what one might hear on the recent output of Enslaved and Natchmystium. "Intangível", entirely sung in Portuguese is a fine example of this new approach, showing a great diversity in structure and featuring some captivating and progressive Hammond lines.
Make sure that In Tha Umbra stays under your radar, because their forthcoming fifth album might be something really special. (7/10)

David Alexandre

For fans of: Enslaved, Natchmystium, Negură Bunget