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iIdaruni beyondunseengateways
Artist: Ildaruni
Title: Beyond Unseen Gateways
Genre: Pagan Black Metal
Release Date: 19th March 2021
Label: Black Lion Records

Album Review

The other day I was lying in bed feeling pretty lethargic. I had no energy at all but I forced myself out of bed, made a strong black coffee and sat at my laptop to check my emails. I opened my email client and I noticed an inundation of music-based emails from various record labels and PR Companies. Nothing new there, I get these emails every day. But on this day, I felt distinctly overwhelmed by the amount of musical information bombarding my senses. “I can’t be dealing with this today!” I thought. I scrolled and scrolled, deleting or red flagging as I went, the occasional yawn full stopping a keyboard click.

And then something stopped me on an email regarding Ildaruni. I don’t know what did it but I clicked on a link, downloaded a press pack and listened to what was contained within. “This is interesting”, I thought. I didn’t know anything about ILDARUNI but they instantly grabbed my attention. Their sound is very deep and portentous with a soaring quality to it. I felt like I was standing on the side of a windswept mountain as dark angels glide down to me, swoop me up and disappear into the clouds that hang like a wool halo around a warrior’s helmet.

The sound is glorious with a hint of the ROTTING CHRISTS about it. The themes with the lyrics are of Pagan Occultism and musings on the past glories of the ancient Kingdom Of Urartia (Van) in what is now eastern Turkey. I find the sound also to be cavernous, the drums and the tremolo picked guitars ably backed by the bass reverberate my atoms into a chilly warm undulation that travels from the crown of my cranium down to the thick skin of my soles. I’m loving the vibes of ‘Towards Subterranean Realms’ with its pan pipe or flutesque flourishes. And then there’s ‘Perpetual Vigil’ which is big on the drums and ‘Exalted Birth’ marbling the composition with sinewy and sharp guitar parts and topped with spatula strokes of bagpipe.

The penultimate track is called ‘Arakha’. It takes a long running jump off a steep cliff into a deep jagged cavern where shards of light punch through misty air. Well sharpened fretwork near the end gives the track it’s flighty aura. Final track ‘Whence Ravenstone Beckons’ starts with a scowling keyboard line and confident drum pattern before the guitars creep in like spider silk produced from liquid steel. The onslaught builds to crescendo, the vocal, in places sounding like Dani Filth but less shrill. The atmosphere is not that much different from what I’ve heard on a ROTTING CHRIST long player but I don’t really care, it’s just as satisfying. All through the album there’s allusions to ROTTING CHRIST but with that something that makes it ILDARUNI’s sound.

Ildaruni formed in June 2016. It’s taken five years to release their first album, no big deal about that, there are bands who’ve gone on for longer without releasing a full-length affair, but I think the wait for fans of the band who've been following them over the past five years is well worth it. I don’t know anything about Armenian culture or history, you don’t have to or need to. The album can be enjoyed as it is. It’s well-crafted and it should be because George Emmanuel, one time guitarist of ROTTING CHRIST mixed and mastered the album at his Pentagram Studios in Athens. I listened to this three times so far and so far, I’ve no sense of boredom or listening fatigue setting in, it just gets better. The more layers of “the onion” that get peeled back the more of the juice oozes out!

In summary, this is good! And recommended highly!


01. Haldinini Baushini, Imsheini Tariani
02. Treading The Path Of Cryptic Wisdom
03. Perpetual Vigil
04. Boundless Numen: Gardens Of Ardini
05. Towards Subterranean Realms
06. Exalted Birth
07. Arakha
08. Whence Ravenstone Beckons


Robert Meliksetyan - Guitars, Keyboards and Lyrics
Arthur Poghosyan - Drums
Mark Erskine - Guitars and Keyboards
Artak Karapetyan - Vocals
Garbis Vizoian - Bass and Lyrics


Cover Picture

iIdaruni beyondunseengateways


Music: 8
Sound: 8
Total: 8 / 10

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