Sivyj Yar – “The Unmourned Past” (Stereogum Premiere)

Russia’s Sivyj Yar have consistently put out some of the best atmospheric black metal albums of recent vintage, releasing beauties annually for the past three years. The band paints a weary pastoral picture — cold gray days after the harvest with a long winter ahead.

Sivyj Yar’s PR rep only brought it to my attention recently, but it turns out that the albums linked above were actually conceived of as a series called “The Peasant Trilogy,” which consists of three LPs bookended by two EPs. Now, the saga of the oft-forgotten poor who work the land is coming to an end on The Unmourned Past, with the title track closing the book on the series as a whole. “The Unmourned Past” is sorrowful but bright, a mid-tempo track that features the bowed instruments and organic-sounding bass that have largely characterized “The Peasant Trilogy,” which has featured numerous heart-swelling masterpieces that play as much to the soul as the ears. Sivyj Yar’s architect, Vladimir, kicks off the song with a wild-eyed solo, and his howls are as pained and earnest as ever. But when it all comes to an end there’s a sense of peace to it, as if after so much toil there’s a reward of well-earned rest. Listen.

The Unmourned Past is out 6/21 via Avantgarde Music.

Tags: Sivyj Yar