Review: Year of the Goat, Lucem Ferre

Upon hearing the name, Year of the Goat, one would conjure up a rather dark, blood lusting sound. To hear this in connection with their debut album title, Lucem Ferre, the latin for the bringer of light/the son of desert fire/Lucifer. A person is sure to believe they are about to listen to a twisted, metal band fitting into the blackest of black categories.

I regret to inform you that you are totally wrong in this case. Opening track, Of Darkness is the polar opposite of what one is expecting. A 70’s feel holding an essence of prog, heading straight back to the roots of the ever-expanding rock tree. Softly sung lyrics at a gentle pace, Year of the Goat seem more Zepplin than Watain. The setting of the album is one of archetypal horror: a gathering of evil entities celebrating the coming of their king in a secluded, rural place pregnant with age and surrounded by mystery

The makings are all there for a truly heavy and lurid act, but Lucem Ferre does the complete opposite, Vermillion Clouds builds the tension in a progressive style reminiscent of Isis. Superb solos and haunting atmospheres are almost evident but there is something quite weak about the four-track album. Cover track, Dark Lord seems to push the tempo up a bit yet title track, Lucem Ferre struggles to really do anything other than sound like a guitarist warming up, leaving the listener unsure if it is trying to build tension or provide a relaxed outro.

Year of the Goat have a good sound however, it could be accused of regurgitating what has already been done before some 40 years ago and repeated through the decades. Lucem Ferre is available from May 6 through Ván Records.

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