When I first came across this new album from the USBM scene, I was put off by the title. It is amazing how an album title can affect your perception of a release. I found it to be unanchored and maybe a little out of place. After 43 minutes of having my sense pummelled, and then canned, by Suicide Forest, I have to say that the title made utter sense to me.

Using a combination of atmospheric black metal spanners and more conventional black metal hammers, ‘Reluctantly’ is layered and then beaten into a mesmerising mixture of raw depression, agonising pain and downright sinister outpourings. For those extreme enthusiasts, there is little not to enjoy as the band rip through the self-titled opener and into the bludgeoning grooves of ‘As The Light Fades Part 1’ and then every downwards via the orchestral dark hangings of ‘Trembling In Emptiness’ and the grotesque majesty of ‘Remorse’.

What’s in a title? A hell of a lot – and here ‘Suicide Forest’ use the shapes and shifts of the music to conjure up a remote place where the terrified only see one door. And that is the door that some will reluctantly open with a knife in their hands.


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