Wolves in the Throne Room – Celestial Lineage (2011)

Album Review

Over the course of their impressive first three albums, Portland, Oregon-based sibling duo Wolves in the Throne Room have established, arguably even steadily incremented, their place on the front lines of the American black metal scene. But even they recognized the need to broaden their sonic palette during the six-month fermentation process that spawned their fourth long-player, Celestial Lineage, in 2011. Not by turning their backs on those formative Norse black metal origins, mind you (you’ll find plenty of buzzsaws, blastbeats, and screeches here), but by daring to introduce even more alien elements into their midst. Hey, everybody’s trying it, but few can pull it off in convincing fashion, ensuring that those dalliances with atmospheric passages, reams and reams of background synthesizers, and other non-metallic counterpoints (see all-inclusive opening statement “Thuja Magus Imperium”) sound neither forced nor contrived with post-metal intentions (hello, Drudkh!). So let’s see here: there’s the densely symphonic barrage of “Subterranean Imitation,” the ethereal pagan oath of “Woodland Cathedral” (one of several tracks featuring angelic croons from guest Jessika Kenney), the vaguely space rock-inspired melodies and ambience of “Astral Blood,” and the dramatic doom-like funeral procession of “Prayer of… Read more on allmusic.com

About the Band

The main members of Wolves in the Throne Room are brothers Aaron and Nathan Weaver. In an interview, Nathan Weaver says that he conceived the vision for the band and wrote the first two songs “Wolves in the Throne Room” and “Black Tea” at an Earth First! rendezvous in the Gifford Pinchot National Forest in 2002.

In 2003, the band moved to a dilapidated 1910 farmstead called Calliope outside Olympia.[2][3] They have often stated that the creation of their farm-stronghold was linked to their early musical progression.[3] Aaron Weaver’s wife Megan grows organic vegetables at Calliope.[1][4] The band has expressed bemusement at the mythology that surrounds them, specifically regarding the band’s rural lifestyle. From an interview with Pitchfork:

“I’m sure that some people who meet us are disappointed that we don’t dress in un-tanned hides and dwell in caves, while others are surprised that the farm… and our struggle to create a life that mirrors the energy of our music is quite real.”[5]

The band’s first release was their 2004 demo. The demo was a black CDR wrapped in fur with moss inside the lyric sheet.[6]

Diadem of 12 Stars was their first studio album, released in 2006.[7] It was recorded by Tim Green at Louder Studios in San Francisco… Read more on wikipedia.org

Tracks

Sample Title/Composer Performer Time Stream
1
Thuja Magus Imperium
Jessika Kenney / Wolves in the Throne Room
Wolves in the Throne Room
11:41
2
Permanent Changes in Consciousness
Wolves in the Throne Room
1:54
3
Subterranean Initiation
Wolves in the Throne Room
7:09
4
Rainbow Illness
Wolves in the Throne Room
1:28
5
Woodland Cathedral
Jessika Kenney
Wolves in the Throne Room
5:26
6
Astral Blood
Wolves in the Throne Room
10:16
7
Prayer of Transformation
Wolves in the Throne Room
10:57