Feldpost is the continuation of Nerrath’s heroic and curiously old-world take on black metal. The general vibe of this project is far from the caustic variety, but one is also loath to peg it squarely under the flower-power brand of black metal. Horn intrepidly borrows from a diverse set of influences, ranging from Oi to folk to more conventional heavy metal and black metal stylings, and weaves them all under a greater narrative banner. It is a credit to Nerrath’s improving writing skills and his individualistic streak that these formative influences feel more subsumed here than ever before. Above all else, Horn is result-oriented music; call it black metal if you absolutely have to, but in some ways hearing this music with preconceived notions also does it disservice. Nerrath is a songwriter first and foremost; treated with that much courtesy, it becomes hard to come away from Feldpost without a sense of admiration for his endeavour.
Feldpost further consolidates the songwriting gains heard on Konflikt. Over time, Nerrath has come to trust his singing voice more; it makes frequent appearances here, either in a tracked capacity or as a solo appendage. Tempos cover a wide spectrum, but at no time is Feldpost confrontational. It is understandable how this might expose the listener to a certain disillusionment; Horn straddles a sort of middle ground, neither soaring fully to the epic heights of a Summoning, nor becoming an absurdly brilliant political organ like, say, Peste Noire. But that is not what Nerrath is after; rather, Horn collects the chalk traces of these twin sentiments and makes the suggestion implicit in the music. Feldpost (the German postal service), like Konflikt, is presumably based around a dog-eared memory from the great wars of the early twentieth century; these events taken as a reference point make it easier for the interested listener to extrapolate the necessary feeling from the music.
While not the biggest fan of this side of the genre, something continues pulling me towards each new Horn release. I believe it to be an expression of the tacit, unsaid empathy between the artist and his audience in its purest form, an empathy that finds realization over and above sub-genre affiliations and associated pedantry.