Winterfylleth’s musical evolution over the past 11 years is testament to the notion that, encoded within all our cultural DNA is a boundless source of inspiration, mystery, and open-ended enquiry, and when handled with the honesty and artistic grace it deserves, the potency is universal.
Having delved into English history, folklore and pastoral geography over five increasingly enrapturing albums that bound together black metal’s twin poles of earthy endeavour and sky-razing wonder, Wintefylleth’s acoustic The Hallowing Of Heirdom, released in April this year on Candlelight/Spinefarm Records, wasn’t so much a leftfield turn as a distillation of their powers. Solemn, exquisitely wrought, and gilded with madrigal antiquity, it unfurled at an unhurried, organic pace as though tending fresh roots planted in nutrient-rich soil.
Now the band are about release Latch To A Grave, the third single from The Hallowing Of Heirdom, and to accompany it, they’ve created a cinematic and atmospheric video, mixing intimately shot performance footage with a historical narrative - featuring the band The Thegns Of Mercia - depicting acts of fealty to kings, combat and burial rites, all set to acoustic cadences, strings and vocal harmonies all weaving an ageless spell. We are proud to offer a present it to you below, but first, Winterfylleth frontman offers some illuminating context for the song:
“As well as the familiar, epic tales of Beowulf and The Wanderer, ancient Anglo-Saxon texts like The Exeter Book contain many pages of riddles within them. They are written about objects ranging from the mythical and the mundane alike, and are a really insightful window into the ways and customs of our ancient cultures. We’ve used them in Winterfylleth before, as lyrical inspiration for songs like Whisper Of The Elements for example, but, coming into The Hallowing Of Heirdom we wanted to use them in a more obvious way. Given we’ve taken a leap of faith and created an album of entirely atmospheric, acoustic music this time around, we wanted the lyrics to be about the kinds of stories and mysticism you would more readily expect to hear in folk music. Given that we have an abundance of such tales in English folklore made that all the easier.
“The title of the new single, Latch To A Grave, is also lyric from the song that references Riddle 51 from The Exeter Book. The lyrics go through a version of the riddle, and are designed so that you would naturally be inclined to ask the question, “Who, (or what) am I?” at the end of them, and so solve the riddle. In this instance the answer to the riddle is A Sword; which is something that in a Queen’s hands, maybe used to knight a soldier, or an entity that acts as a foil to an author’s Pen, or in the wrong hands maybe be liable to take someone’s life in war or battle, and thus holds the metaphorical Latch To Their Grave.”
Prepare to gain, or perhaps lose your bearings, and enter the rich seam that is Latch To A Grave below!
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