'The Italian Avantgarde Music is on of my favorite label. And I'm not saying that for nationalism… the roster of this label includes some of the best bands actually on the scene, and the new Winds from the north are indeed worthy to be defined so. After the debut MCD Of Entity And Mind this Norwegian band comes to us with their first full-length that is a masterpiece. The mastermind and keyboard player Andy Winter has been able to gather some of the greatest artists of the Norwegian scene such as Carl August Tidemann [Arcturus], Lars Eric Si [Khold], Jan Axel Von Blomberg, [also known as the legendary Hellhammer, band member of almost a thousand groups, first of all MayheM] in order to create something really special. Reading these names you would think about a Black Metal project, but you would be wrong. To define Winds' music is not easy, as for all the albums which have that something special allowing them to go beyond the schemes; anyway we can say that it is a melancholic and deep gothic-progressive metal which meets arrangements and sonorities proper of classical music, not just metal parts alternated with violins or cellos. The hard thing is to describe with words this great achievement of Andy Winter's compositions: also when you hear the wonderful guitar of Tidemann you can have the impression that the same riff could have been written for a violin. And it is no coincidence if we can often hear these two instruments playing together.
Analyzing the single musicians' performances I really must declare my admiration for all of them: a skillful work by everyone and it seems that they have always played together. Tidemann's work is great, like as in Arcturus he is able to create vortex of baroque sounds that are simply wonderful. Hellhammer's drumming, even though it's not very speedy nor powerful it's incredibly precise and clean [as it's supposed to be on this album], not only an accompaniment but, in particular with the cymbals, he creates a thin and incredibly various web of background sounds that links perfectly the other instruments together. Lars Eric Si's voice, deep and sad but never too much depressive, flies softly over the music not taking too much part nor exceeding in useless virtuosities. His bass work is sometimes soft, sometimes pounding as the moment requires. Winters keyboards close the circle of perfection with elegant piano interludes or delicate accompaniment to the orchestra [performed by a real quartet of a violin, a viola, a cello and a bass]. To complete an album which already for what regarding the music deserves the title of a masterpiece we find good and introspective lyrics [written by Winter] and wonderful artwork by the artist Travis Smith, who has done one of his best works, grasping perfectly the mood of the music within the drawings.
Listen to Reflections Of The I is like drinking a glass of red wine in an autumn garden, delicate but persistent. May the Winds blow again in our ears.'