Gremnir - Sinnsyk
Released off label 2022
This review was commissioned. However, it bears no weight on the score or decision. All reviews are written from an unbiased standpoint.
With an ache to hear something new from Gremnir was I delighted to learn of the neofolk / pagan’s latest piece ‘Sinnsyk’. This piece was initially imagined and inspired by the prelude to Bach’s Fifth Cello Suite in C Minor, with an original working title of ‘Mild Insanity’. However, after the passing of his grandfather who would often sit and listen to Gremnir practice, the song became much more personal. Gremnir first performed the piece at his grandfather’s funeral in 2006 and continued to mull over the song for years to come. Eventually, ‘Sinnsyk’ was birthed from this. The Norwegian-to-English translation reads as ‘Insane’ or ‘mind-sick’. As the song plays, Gremnir invites listeners to reminisce of someone they cherish.
The nearly-seven minute ‘Sinnsyk’ starts off with depressing cello notes and bouts of low and rumbling percussion. Being a fan of epic medieval films, all I could think of through these notes, including the cinematic ambiance, was that of a scorched battlefield as those who remain scour through it for survivors. Around the three-and-a-half-minute mark, Gremnir’s vocals kick in. What we get is traditional Nordic throat singing as well as clean vocals intertwining with one another. Gremnir is powerful, channeling his grief into strength, and echoing the final lines of the song, ‘Hel called back / He still lives in you”. Seven-and-a-half out of ten.
Nov 28 2022
I've been writing for Brutal Resonance since November of 2012 and now serve as the editor-in-chief. I love the dark electronic underground and usually have too much to listen to at once but I love it. I am also an editor at Aggressive Deprivation, a digital/physical magazine since March of 2016. I support the scene as much as I can from my humble laptop.
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