German metallers LUNAR SHADOW will enter Glooven Studios in Leipzig to begin work on their sophomore album, “The Smokeless Fires”, which will see the light of day in early 2019 via Cruz Del Sur Music.
The follow-up to 2017’s “Far From Light” will mark the first LUNAR SHADOW album to feature new singer Robert Roettig, who replaces Alex Vornam. After a couple of live appearances with DESASTER, SPELL, TOKYO BLADE and VISIGOTH and a much-needed break away from the guitar, lead guitarist Max ‘Savage’ Birbaum started assembling new songs, which, as he explains, will take LUNAR SHADOW in a new, but also familiar direction.
“Robert sounds different — his vocals are a bit more high-pitched than before, yet he still has this obscure-Valusian touch to it,” says Birbaum. “I’d say that the album sounds a lot like LUNAR SHADOW, yet with some new elements. I guess you could say that there are more black metal-influences this time, more DISSECTION riffs and even some blast-beats, but still held together by twin guitar leads. Yet, as always, I just do what I want to do, so there will also be a piano ballad plus a song with New Wave-influences. The album sounds like if WISHBONE ASH played ‘Far Away From the Sun’ by SACRAMENTUM back in 1976 while having sex with a dryad.”
Whereas “Far From Light” tackled lyrical topics about death, “The Smokeless Fires” will be about another crucial element of the human spectrum: passion. “‘The Smokeless Fires’ are our passions, the things that drive us on, keep us going, prevent us from death, things that break us down, shatter us, make us vanish,” notes Birbaum. “[New song] ‘Laurelindórenan’ is inspired by the writings of Tolkien, ‘Red Nails (For The Pillar Of Death)’ and ‘Conajohara No More’ are based upon stories by Robert E. Howard. The lyrical themes haven’t changed that much, I still write about life, death, lost love, depression, ancient cities, broken swords and ghastly spells.”
The album’s artwork was created by Portland, Oregon-based artist Adam Burke, who previously handled the band’s 2015 “Triumphator” EP. Depicting a storm of fire lingering around two lovers, the album cover, like most of Burke’s work, is visually-appealing and fits the album’s themes perfectly. “The combination of two, forming something strange and beautiful,” says Birbaum. “Love is maybe one of our strongest passions. We long for it, we lose it, we starve ourselves to get it, we throw it away, when we weary. Love is important. And a good reason to die for.”
“The Smokeless Fires” track listing:
1. Catch Fire
2. Conajohara No More
6. Red Nails (For The Pillar Of Death)
7. Hawk Of The Hills