The watcher stands alone in a memory of the primordial forests that once covered this land. He stands in perfect stillness as the hunter passes, dipping beneath the vault of branches, a natural cathedral reflecting the gentle beauty of the fractured architecture of sadness.

The hunter flies on through the still forest air on soft wings, the bringer of death; always alone, always in darkness, always in silence…a ghost upon the wing. And the watcher continues his vigil in the tender company of his heartbreak and his reflections upon sunlight remembered… Born under the vast skies of the Norfolk countryside, in the solitude of the secretive wetlands to the echoes of the curlew’s haunting cry, And Now The Owls Are Smiling explore the beauty of nature and the beauty in melancholy, the forests of the mist shrouded past and the dark forests of the human heart.

New album, The Comforting Grip Of Misery is sweeping and majestic, an autumn wind rushing across the fenlands and through the gnarled and mighty oaks, but also intensely intimate; sweetly summoning up the spectres of sadness and weaving them into bitter sweet vistas of memory, tapestries of treasured tears woven with the words that meant more to you than any others you have heard or spoken.

The trembling melodies of ‘The Comforting Grip Of Misery’ draw you through the valleys of the scars upon your heart, while the bewitching simplicity of ‘Winter’s Elegy’ draws you back into a past you have forgotten to remember. Following on from the haunting touch of 2018s Desolation, The Comforting Grip Of Misery casts even more potent spells, incantations that can unlock the essence of your being and bring the secret loves and losses of your soul out into the dappled sunlight beneath the ancient trees. These songs, these distillations of the essence of humanity can teach you to find the beauty in everything…even misery. Look for this precious tome of sound, rooted in the most expressive forms of depressive, atmospheric black metal as winter approaches. 

On November 1st Clobber Records will unveil these songs from the smiling hunter on CD, Digital, Cassette and limited edition double cassette box set.

And Now The Owls Are Smiling – The Comforting Grip Of Misery Atmospheric black metal on Clobber Records

Three years on from Spiritus In Terra, an album of intoxicating sounds and colours that Terrorizer magazine branded “an absolute delight”, Arx Atrata have returned. The window onto wonder has been flung open once more and we are invited to gaze again upon the ancient cliff tops, the endless sea, the woods at sunset and the shadowed tor. In our world, where our dreams walk in chains, choked in dirt, Arx Atrata offer us a vision of freedom, a glimpse of the path untravelled…

The music of Arx Atrata captures an atmosphere like no other and with new album The Path Untravelled, that atmosphere is more powerful than ever before. You can almost taste the sea salt on the wind, feel the rocks beneath your feet and the sun upon your skin. The torrent of riffs sweeps you up and carries you from one breathtaking vista to another and the threads of melody illuminate a world of hope and possibilities, where your dreams can shake off the shackles of everyday life. Songs like ‘To Be Reborn’ and ‘An Undying Verse’ take the grandeur of epic, atmospheric black metal and imbue it with the intensity and intimacy of personal experience, expanding its horizons to encompass the uplifting, golden light of the first rays of the morning sun as well as the secrets of midnight. Ben Sizer, the man behind the Arx Atrata name, has dug deeper, reached further and dreamed in even more vibrant colours to create something truly special.

The Path Untravelled will be revealed on October 11th, a fire to light our way through the darkness of winter. Follow it, embrace it, allow your dreams to breathe and discover all the sights that lie behind the obscuring clouds of our reality.

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ARX ATRATA to release their third album of captivating, atmospheric black metal, The Path Untravelled, on October 11th