When you hear black metal and the country of Georgia in the same sentence, I’m sure you’re thinking “Where is Georgia and how is there a good band from this place I don’t know?” Well I’m not going to give a Geography lesson but this country brings on the best sympho-black metal bands I have ever heard. Signs is a band with force, creativity, ferocity and just sheer brilliance in this genre. There isn’t much online about the history or origins of this band but this album along with it’s predecessor Path of the Damned from 2012 have definitely sparked my interest. This band is all that is right about symphonic black metal.
United In Tragedy is the sophomore release by the relatively young Georgian group Signs who formed in 2009. With the sounds of their music from the first album to now, it seems they have found their perfect mixture of an almost gothic black metal sound with intricate symphonic elements that meet an almost Dimmu Borgir pattern. Tracks like “From Dawn to Infinity” and “Undivine Proposal” have the heavy influence of black metal with the accompanying keyboards floating above the pounding drums and tremelo-picked guitars. The interludes between parts of songs create a haunting atmosphere with the singled out keyboards that are similar to that of Twilight Ophera, Bishop of Hexen and older Dimmu Borgir. The track “On Broken Wings” stands out with the use of strategically placed death metal vocals and riffage that differs from the bleak black metal atmosphere.
United In Tragedy is one of the strongest, well written and original symphonic black metal releases to date. This band has the power to surpass many others out there with the power that the group harnesses within this release and probably any other release they put out. Everything that fans of Dimmu Borgir, Bishop of Hexen and sympho-black metal in general like about the genre is right here in an eight track album. I highly suggest this release because you can’t describe the brilliance of this album. It has ferocity and elegance, speed and technicality while staying melodic and ambient.