Label: AOP Records
Date: July 30th, 2021
There are heaps of rubbish to be thrown on these Germans. While looking around, investigating and trying to come up with something meaningful to write here, I came across a huge “discussion” about whether this is a part of a bandwagon or a simply amazing fresh force on the black metal playground.
The thoughts are varied to the point where Groza’s debut album scores zero percent with three reviews on Metal Archives and is praised in some really respectable publications. Some go down the middle of the road saying it was a decent copycat.
Me, I haven’t had a chance to examine the mentioned debut, but listening to its follow-up, I can clearly see where the problem lays. Let me tell you what my thoughts are.
If you create good music, it really doesn’t matter if you look up to an already existing pattern or a band. Simple as that. After all, ninety nine percent of today’s music is a remix. The remaining one percent are the greats of whatever genre we’re dealing with at the time. If we take Groza as an example, yeah, sure, I can hear Mgla, Harakiri For The Sky and a pinch of that Icelandic atmosphere floating around. No question if the Germans are looking up to those bands.
However, what I’m about to say might shock you. This next sentence contains words that some readers may find disturbing. “The Redemptive End” is a better album than anything Mgla did after “With Hearts toward none”. Yet I don’t find anything but deifying attitudes towards the Poles, even if they are recycling their own invention for the past six or seven years. Making album after album of the very same stuff that made them famous.
Okay, Groza are no Mgla. They are lacking their own touch. One can easily mistake their soundscape for Mgla’s. Harakiri, not so much. But does that automatically mean this is a bad record?
Hell no! It is not! It is a very good one! Right on the level of the one that gave the Germans their name. Still, below the mentioned sophomore by the Poles. But, I still underline that it is a better effort than anything after it.
I love it and it took me just a couple of spins to fall in love with it. Through and through. And I suggest you try it too. Forget about whether it sounds like this or that, or it stems from here or there. It all goes back to that caveman who first found out clapping his hands makes some sort of a lovely sound, anyway. The progression of music is indefinite. So who cares if “The Redemptive End” is not the next step in that progression? It is a fine piece of music and that is the one and only conclusion to be made.