The Smashing Skull Sessions

The Smashing Skull Sessions is a podcast, interview and review website, set up to showcase and support the underground rock and metal scenes. Our goal is to promote artists and bands from right across the globe, giving them another voice and another forum in which to get their music out to a greater audience. We also have a new review series, The Review Room, which is another unique way of getting bands and artists some extra coverage and promotion

Lethvm - Winterreise

Lethvm (Lêtum) is a Belgian band hailing from the Namur area and was formed in the year 2015. Their first EP Affable Erosion came out in 2016 and another year later their debut album This Fall Shall Cease saw the light of day, or perhaps seeing the darkness of night would sound more suitable!, because this band’s music is not for the weak hearted and happy the peppy people. Nevertheless, more people got aware of them, which resulted in their second album Acedia beeing released by renowned label dunk!Records.

It’s from this release that I got acquainted with this band and have been following them since then. Now, a new album, Winterreise is here! Recorded, mixed and mastered by Tim de Gieter (bass player in Amenra, Doodseskader, Predatory Void) in his Much Luv studio. Again, pressed and released by the awesome people from dunk! who always seem to have a perfect nose for spotting talent and quality.

The bar is set high for Winterreise, to follow up such an impressive album as Acedia. And it succeeds if you ask me. Winterreise continues where the predecessor left off with the same distinctive ingredients and sound. Expect Amenra inspired heavy sludge and doom with post-hardcore screams, and with so much more to offer. Winterreise has more post-metal additions and has more varieties in vocals. One can hear grunts, clean vocals, chanted vocals and female vocals (by Elena Lacroix on Mournful) on this record.

Lethvm are so good at combining massive slow walls of sound with in-your-face aggression, into-your-spine sorrow and beautiful transcending melodies. The songs are shaped and deepened by freely interpreted poems by 19th century poet Wilhelm Müller and by composer Franz Schubert’s song Cycle Winter Journey. Vocalist Vincent Dessard screams, grunts and sings all his emotions into your soul. What a showing of sheer vulnerablity, dedication and surrender. Chapeau. To me that’s what makes this album go even more deeper and further as before. Aligned with fantastic musiscianship, massive and impressive songs are created. Personal favourites are Carved, Mournful and Night which are coincidentally, the last three songs on the album, and with ultra-killer songs Blank, Pretence and Torrents in the first half of the album, it only proves what a high-level strong album this Winterreisse turned out! Shoutout as well for the stunning artwork the band created themselve. This is absolutely a must check-out for every fan of extreme, beautiful and intense music.