On September 4th, 2022, one-man-band TER released his debut EP titled, “Homeward Bound”. TER is named after the river in Spain near the composer, Nil Lapedra’s, home of Girona in the mountain Ulldeter. The album art by Nil Lapedra
and Marta Pairó is perfect for the material as they place you in a dark desolate forest, making you weary for what may lie within. Homeward Bound is an excellent debut effort that takes listeners through a journey that can only be considered a battle with many respites and attacks.
The EP begins with the warm welcome titled, “MCMXCII”. It is beyond haunting and with it being the spooky season I am in love with it. You can hear birds in the background, wind howling, a carriage being driven, horses, and what sounds like a military band. Acoustic guitar enters the fray and I cannot understate how beautiful the guitar tones in this EP are. Then as the intro concludes, you begin to hear an onslaught of heavy guitar as the song fades.
“Homeward Bound’ is obviously meant to be the star of the EP and it does not disappoint. TER shows off his composition and production chops. All the instrumentals and vocals bounce off each other like a symphony. You can tell there are a million things going on in the song but it does not sound muddy or overwhelming. Starts off slow, but once the song kicks in it is like a left hook to the jaw. Similar to the album art featuring the knight, this song makes me want to pick up a sword and ride into battle. Is there a bigger compliment you can give to a metal band?
After the gorgeous acoustic outro of the previous track, “Cerulean Shores” starts off as a heavy onslaught. Guest lead guitar by Carles Soler (of Haunted Gods) is just absolutely phenomenal. It made me want to pause the album and pick up “Through the Fire and Flames” on Guitar Hero. The symphonic elements really shine on this track as well. There is a portion of the song that tricked me into thinking it was a soft outro and then kicked in again harder than ever. Who does not love a few twists and turns on their Black Metal roller-coaster?
This EP is being marketed as a Black Metal and Folk release. On “Terra Eterna” you finally receive the folk influence in all of its glory. A truly beautiful track that tells a story through its lyrics, instrumentals, and vocal delivery. Nil had been using his vocals as instrument among instruments and on “Terra Eterna” he finally lets them be the star of the show and I am grateful. The best thing about symphonic metal, in my opinion, is its ability to take you to another world, and this may be one of my favorite songs.
Unfortunately, all great things come to an end. However, TER makes sure to send the listeners away happy. This is by far the heaviest track on the EP. It is just an extremely fun track to listen to from beginning to end. It is a stark contrast from the intro track, “MCMXCII”, which felt like a slow-paced opening scene versus this heavy, fast-paced climax to the story. The vocals are again the star but in a more brutal sense compared to the previous track. Overall, this track did its job, leaving me happy with the EP yet wanting more immediately.
I would definitely consider myself a heavy music fan. However, Black Metal has always been missing from my spotify “On Repeat” playlist. If this EP is any indicator of what I have been missing out on, I definitely need to expand my taste. I went into this EP knowing nothing about TER and I am now incredibly excited to see what else he comes up with in the future. TER has shown himself through this debut effort to be a master of storytelling and composition and succeeded in creating a remarkable journey for the listener.