Cirith UngolForever Black

Cirith Ungol - Forever Black album cover
Label:Metal Blade Records – none
9 x File, FLAC, Album
Style:Heavy Metal, Doom Metal


1The Call1:04
2Legions Arise3:19
3The Frost Monstreme5:15
4The Fire Divine3:51
6Fractus Promissum4:08
8Before Tomorrow3:57
9Forever Black5:34

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Title (Format)LabelCat#CountryYear
Recently Edited
Forever Black (LP, Album, Limited Edition, Stereo, Ice-Blue/Black Marble)Metal Blade Records3984-15708-1US2020
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Forever Black (CD, Album, Stereo, Digipak)Metal Blade Records3984-15708-0Europe2020
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Forever Black (LP, Album, Limited Edition, Numbered, Green, Light Olive)Metal Blade Records3984-15708-1Europe2020
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Forever Black (LP, Album, Limited Edition, Blue Light/Red Marbled)Metal Blade Records3984-15708-1Europe2020
New Submission
Forever Black (LP, Album, Limited Edition, Numbered, Stereo, White Black Marbled)Metal Blade Records3984-15708-1Europe2020


  • Wuchak's avatar
    Edited 2 years ago
    Serious Uncool returns after 29 years

    Released in 2020, FOREVER BLACK is the fifth of five albums by Ventura, California’s Cirith Ungol, 29 years after their heyday in 1981-1991. While guitarist Jerry Fogle died in 1998 he had left the band in 1987 and thus the band recruited Jim Barraza, who played on the final album of their original tetralogy, PARADISE LOST (1991). Jim returns for this reunion disc along with guitarist Greg Lindstrom, who played with the band up through their first album, FROST AND FIRE (1981).

    Cirith Ungol’s name comes from JRR Tolkien's The Lord of the Rings and means "Pass of the Spider,” which referred to a high pass in the land of Mordor where the monster Shelob dwelt. Their oddball name inspired metal fans to refer to them as Sarah's Uncle or Serious Uncool. Meanwhile their banshee-on-drugs "singer," Tim Baker, had a sound only a mother could love. But they were unique Sword & Sorcery-themed metal from the 80s. The closest comparison would probably be Manilla Road or maybe Bathory's Viking metal stuff, but they really sounded like no other, so I give 'em extra points for uniqueness.

    While KING OF THE DEAD (1984) is arguably their finest moment, 1991’s PARADISE LOST was no slouch with standout cuts like "Chaos Rising," "Fire," "Heaven Help Us." FOREVER BLACK sounds like it could’ve been released within that timeframe. It helps that their style of epic doom/power metal is timeless. My favorites on this disc are the catchy & menacing “Nightmare,” the relatively progressive “Fractus Promissum” and the folklore-ish “Stormbringer,” which starts out acoustically.

    Heck, the whole album is Serious Uncool, um, I mean seriously entertaining. While the hackneyed lyrics can be eye-rolling ("I'm so ee-vil"), they're fantasy-oriented in the sword & sorcery vein; anyone who takes 'em seriously needs to visit the local psych ward.

    If you favor original-sounding non-commercial metal à la Manilla Road, check this out.

    The album clocks-in at just over 39 minutes.

    GRADE: B+/A-


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