Jarun is a band with a history of bad luck, recording issues and delays. In 2008 Jarun came to life as the solo-project for guitarist Zagreus. Yet, soon enough he found out that this was meant to be much more than just a one man act, thus he invited other musicians to join in. The first album constisted solely of songs written by Zagreus and the recording had been a tedious task. The new album differs in that way. This is a cooperative effort by all members which does indeed show a well-attuned band but it still wasn't easy to get this album recorded.
The album opens with an instrumental piece of post-metal, loaded with folk influences. It shows the progression that the band wants to make, and has been making since the previous effort. Having started out as an atmospheric folk black metal band, Jarun slowly evolved in a post-black metal band with some pagan influences. 'Kamienie' starts reminding me of a band like Opeth and it's not the only song which does. In fact, most of the songs on 'Pod Niebem Utkanym Z Popiołu' come in that region.
With complex song structures, bombastic pieces of chaotic blackened sludge and fierce vocals, Jarun manages to grab the listener's attention immediately. Clean, atmospheric and progressive passages (including some folk elements) alternate with these intense bursts of distortion and blast beats. 'Zawołaj Mnie A Przyjdę' seems to borrow heavily from the Scandinavian black metal wave of the nineties, reminding me of bands like Emperor of Immortal.
But indeed, we're not done there. Somehow Jarun succeeds perfectly in clearing the stylistic musical boundaries between black metal and sludge. 'Pod Niebem Utkanym Z Popiołu' could actually be both. This song suddenly makes me understand why black metal is so popular in sludge circles. They truly enforce each other's intensity and bleakness. 'Jak Wiatr', which closes the album in a brilliant way, is probably my favourite song on the album, even coming up with some progressive metal solos and atmosphere.
'Trzy śmierci' is another great example of this mix, although it clearly breathes the malignancy of black metal. Extreme headbangers of all ages will be extremely pleased with something like this because of the regular shifts in tempo, intensity and malevolence. At times, this is a crushing, almost trance-inducing piece of verocious metal. 'Piołun' on the other hand is a ferocious and chaotic song that blasts everything in sight.
So in all, we're dealing with a pretty damn good album that is clearly rooted in the black metal scene but dares to cross boundaries. Once a folk black metal band, Jarun has clearly evolved. Somehow I think that this evolution is just getting started and that this band will show a lot of new, exciting and refreshing things in the future. However, for now I recommend checking this album out if you want something truly extreme.