Skepticism, Finland's long-reigning funeral doom masters, have just announced their sixth album, Companion, and with it, a slice of melancholy by way of a music video for the debut single, "Calla."

As one of the originators of this narrow and uncompromisingly slow, crushing subset of doom metal, Skepticism have stood as a pillar of the genre since first releasing the haunting Stormcrowfleet in 1995. Now, they're back after their longest studio drought in their career, set to release Companion, the successor to 2015's Ordeal, on Sept. 24 through Svart Records.

"Calla," surprisingly, is among the more urgent of Skepticism's songs. It's not what most would dub fast, or even mid-tempo, but it certainly is by the band's own pre-existing standards of funereal metal. Marked by swaths of rich organ melodies, choral chords, slowly advancing rhythms, sparse but forceful drumming and Matti Tilaeus' tortured, gravely croak, "Calla" is another high mark in the band's catalog.

As is standard practice, Skepticism's forthcoming record bears a total of six news songs, for which the base tracks were recorded with the band playing in full together in free tempo.

For Companion, the group recorded at Sonic Pump Studios with engineer Nino Laurenne, who also handled the mixing.

Laurenne said of the process, "It took a while to get used to some of the unusual details on how the band plays and sounds. One such detail is the snare drum without the snares. Once I got used to them it became obvious that I should refrain from using some of the techniques I normally use when mixing. The drums for example retain the feel of the recorded performance very closely - and definitely have the longest reverbs I have ever used! A band with such a long history and a sound of their own is best presented in its natural form, even when it departs from common practices."

Read the lyrics to "Calla" below and hear the song further down the page, where you will also find the artwork and track listing for Companion. Pre-order the album here.

Skepticism, "Calla" Lyrics

At the gate
Calmly I wait
Mild wind of the evening
May not be cold
Alive I feel
That I may not be
Slowly time passes

A touch of eternity
Like the moment
I first met You

Narrow path
Old grey bridge
Water as still as silence
It is not yet time

By the path
Calla lilies
Pale in the night
Colorless in starlight

As long as it takes
I am prepared for this

At dawn You arrive
Together we cross the grey bridge
And enter the valley
Of calla lilies

Skepticism, "Calla" Music Video

Skepticism, Companion Album Art + Track Listing

Skepticism, 'Companion'
Svart Records

01. "Calla"
02. "The Intertwined"
03. "The March of the Four"
04. "Passage"
05. "The Inevitable"
06. "The Swan and the Raven"

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