One of my main interests in the musical field is made by all those albums I would define “godforsaken”, and lots of good releases slowly become included in this class as time goes by. Us Auter Zyt, the only full-length from a one-man band from Switzerland called Sunuthar, got to be one of the most significant examples of the aforementioned category. I’ve known this one album for almost a year and never knew how to deal with the fact that now I’m the very first person to write a review of it, despite the album being already 12 years old. But all metal albums are pieces of art in their own way, and if that’s true that art never dies, I’ll start the discussion with a phrase from one song from this album: “Let the past revive”.
Reviewing this album actually turned out to be a very difficult task. The album features more than one hour of music so I’ll try to focus on the main aspects before landing on what are my favorite songs. First of all, Simon Müller is the name behind this band, and somebody will probably remember it for the two famous folk international projects Folkearth and Folkodia, where he indeed took part in some albums. Keep in mind the two names because these are very strong influences on the Swiss work.
I’m not going to hide it, epic viking metal is not among my favorite folk metal subgenres. Us Auter Zyt never stopped interesting me as far as I’ve known it, though. There’s an awesome amount of laudable work if you consider there’s just a person behind it all.
Musically talking, the artist has quite a similar musical approach to the international bands he was part of. Acoustic parts with clean guitars and/or accordions alternate with heavier parts made of mid-paced electric guitars and clean or harsh vocals, as well as a good amount of folk components and keyboards. Voumondnacht is a good example of this mixture, as well as one of the most successful songs in my opinion. The album also features some acoustic, clean tracks like Signs of Time and The Journey, where you can clearly hear the artist’s abilities with its music and with the lyrical parts which do not appear obvious at all. It may seem weird but these two songs are probably my favorite of this work, probably because they were the very first tracks to get me into the album.
This album features a couple of longer-than-average songs, with Schatz Us Goud being the longest one clocking in at 7 minutes and 30 secs, with the other two being Dragons Rage and the Swiss Verlornigs Heer. Luckily the three examples manage not to fall into the usual mistake of repetitive chords, through the wide variety of instruments used in different sections, resulting in tracks with heavier and slower moments. Us Auter Zyt succeeds in both parts, which is enough to prove the artist’s ability once again.
The songs are sung both in English and in the artist’s mother language, and the song “Signs of Time” has its Swiss brother “Im Waud”.
I personally think that this album has nothing to envy to many of the current viking metal releases and I’m still wondering why is it so overlooked! But it’s never too late to rediscover an old work so I hope you’ll find the time to turn back and listen to Sunuthar’s album, because it’ll certainly be worth it.
- Before Battle / E auti Gschicht 08:53
- Voumondnacht 04:25
- Us auter Zyt 04:21
- Schatz us Goud 05:16
- Devil’s Blaze 07:25
- Dragon’s Rage 06:10
- Im Waud 03:28
- March of the Lost Souls / Verloornings Heer 08:47
- Arise 05:19
- Signs of Time 03:17
- Journey 03:35