Bearstorm was born in 2008, founded by metalfans with backgrounds in classical music and jazz. This would already be an interesting combination but there's even more. Other genres like country, post-rock, sludge and old hard rock are also incorporated. There's not a lot of country music audible, which isn't really a bad thing. I really don't want to see people line dancing at a black metal concert.
Because yes, this is mainly a black metal album, filled with haunted screams and highly progressive and technical music. The band themselves call it 'blackened southern deathprog'. From a metal standpoint, you can compare them with a mix of Opeth, Krallice, Iron Maiden and The Shining. Furthermore, I wouldn't be surprised if jazz fans can appreciate this album, maybe not the vocals but definitely the music.
The album opens with 'Glacial Relic \ Riparian Forest'. Immediately the band shows their abilities and their experience as musicians. Complicated guitar riffs and song structures guide a fierce, brutal voice. Tempos continuously change, along with intensity and power. 'Little Portals to the Greater Sadness' opens with vintage hard rock riffs and suddenly turns into an awesome musical maze. 'Why we can't have nice things' drives on a fantastic stoner rock riff.
It's impressive to witness all these different influences and elements thrown together into a bleak and grimm black metal atmosphere. Beyond the musical crafsmanship, Bearstorm clearly knows how to grab you by the troat with their massive sound. Somehow they managed to create a highly convincing soundtrack for the formation and history of North America. From the torpid brutality of plate tectonics to the sheer violence of American war, genocide and exploitation, everything is perfectly present on 'Americanus'.
The album last for 36 minutes and is a crushing piece of complex, progressive music like you've probably never heard before. Fans of the bands I've mentioned earlier in this writing really can't go wrong with Americanus. These fans usually are musicians themselves by the way, enjoying a concert of album by being mesmerized by the incredible ingenuity the band possesses. All I can do to end this review, is suggesting to check out this epic piece of music. It really is quite stunning what these guys are capable of.