You idiots miss me? There’s no doubt that I’ve scaled back the contributions to this blog (it’s a life thing), but my contributions to this particular post will still emerge fairly regularly. While I don’t actually care what any of you think (see: the dissolution of my Twitter account), I still enjoy talking and writing about booze and metal. Audience optional. And that brings us here, where I am dabbling in something a little different for me (wine) and something familiar (black metal). So, without further delay… The Metal: Emperor’s Anthems to the Welkin at Dusk. The Booze: The Seeker Cabernet Sauvignon.
The Metal: Emperor – Anthems to the Welkin at Dusk
What can I really say about this band or album that hasn’t already been said? Emperor has long been regarded as one of the most influential black metal bands in history, and this record is a perfect example as to why. Yet, there is a reason I’m covering this record today. For one, I picked it up on vinyl at Migration Fest because I hate owning money. Secondly, it should be common knowledge at this point that Emperor is planning on reuniting to play this album in full at a select festivals to celebrate it’s 20th anniversary. Some people seem to think that includes the U.S. I personally doubt it. Regardless. Emperor is, and always will be, one of my favorite bands, and seeing them play In The Nightside Eclipse at Wacken two years ago will always be a lasting memory with me. And while that particular debut album is probably my favorite from the Norwegians, there’s no doubt that their follow up could be (and should be) regarded even more highly. There’s no doubt that the band went through tremendous growth between albums — factor in the drama surrounding Faust (certainly a tale for another day) and the swap of Tchort for Alver on bass, and you can see why this sophomore album took a bit of a turn. While similar to Nightside in many of the elements that define Emperor’s black metal, Anthem’s is faster, heavier, and more dynamic overall. The sound is more guitar-centric and manages to reign in some of the symphonic elements. Start to finish it truly is a growth on their debut in terms of orientation and overall creativity, with “With Strength I Burn” being my favorite Emperor track of all time. Yes, it’s a masterpiece. And I’m thrilled to own it and to know they are celebrating this album in a similar fashion to Nightside.
The Booze: The Seeker Cabernet Sauvignon
You’d think somebody that took a wine appreciation class in college would understand and appreciate wine a bit more than he does. Yet, no. I will always enjoy a good merlot or riesling (here’s looking at you, New York and Germany), but on the whole this isn’t a beverage I turn to often. But here I am, acknowledging that this Chilean cabernet needs to be consumed before it sits out any longer. I once would have been able to write volumes on the viscosity, density, flavor, and clarity of this wine. But tonight that is proving difficult. Beyond the fact that I am out of practice, I am also drinking this out of my pentagram chalice… which is not glass. So visual analysis is out. I can say that, going into my third glass now, that it is tasty served slightly chilled. Perhaps a little thin and not quite as robust as I would prefer for a cabernet, it is still something that is very much enjoyable. Flavors and likened to… fuck I have no idea. Red wine. Chilean wines, from my experience, have their niche and reds are generally their stronger side. I’m not super high on this particular wine, but for a mid-shelf cab, I really can’t complain. Besides, wine and black just… feels right.
I’m going to leave it at that. But I hope most of you were able to pick up on the logic of this combination. Red wine is a pentagram goblet combined with one of the most important black metal albums of all time. I’ll close everything off by saying this: As of today, August 26th, 2016, I will not be attending Maryland Deathfest 2017. If by some miracle Emperor decides to come to the U.S. for who the fuck knows what reason… maybe I’ll change my mind. Good night.
“Ein Bier… bitte.”