Markus' Heavy Music Blog

My world of music - est. 2013

pagan metal

CD review WINTERSUN "The Forest Seasons"

Veröffentlicht am 29. Juli 2017 von Markus W. in Wintersun, Black Metal, Pagan Metal, Heavy Metal, Melodic Black Metal, CD Review, News, Nuclear Blast

CD review WINTERSUN "The Forest Seasons"

(9/10) What looks on first sight as an EP is, even though containing not more than four songs, a full-length longplayer by Finnish epic metal unit Wintersun.

The ones of you that had a chance to visit Finland have an idea where the inspiration for this longplayer comes from. The Scandinavian country is not only famous for sauna and vodka. It’s also the beautiful landscape and nature that characterizes the Northern region, a view that changes with each of the four seasons.

 

Wintersun took these endless forests as an inspiration for inviting fans to an acoustic journey though nature and myth. Each of the epically long songs stands for one of the seasons, starting with “Awaken From the Dark Slumber (Spring)”. The tune is built on the typical Wintersun trademarks with a focus on melody and harmonies. The opener is, like spring, a light-hearted song by still being still reflecting Wintersun with a 100%.

 

“The Forest That Weeps (Summer)” is next. The composition starts with an acoustic intro that leads to heavy riffs. The song has a majestic approach and is full of small little twists and details which helps to keep the excitement throughout the twelve minutes. Heavy guitars interact with folk-based calmer section, culminating in an impressive choir at the end of ‘summer’.

 

Leafs are getting yellow and orange. “Eternal Darkness (Autumn)” picks up this darker vibe with some animal sounds in the beginning. Nature goes to sleep and so does everything that’s connected to it. Not a surprise that the song expresses this mood with heavy guitars and blastbeats. The song is brutal, especially compared to the first two tracks, and comes with a lot of melancholy that covers they heart of the listener with a grey shade.

 

Tristesse takes over in the final chapter. “Loneliness (Winter)” expresses the feeling of a long winter night in a perfect fashion. The slow beat brings the icy frost right into your living room and you can feel the coldness slowly creepy into everything that didn’t find a shelter. Wintersun captures this feeling in a perfect way.

 

Jari Mäenpää and companions created an album that is impressive. If music is a carrier for emotions and feel, this album succeeded from beginning till end. The cyclus of seasons is done in an excellent way and you can’t let loose. This album needs full attention and a soon as you listened to the first notes you must continue till the end. Wintersun shows that a forest has far more to offer than just a bunch of trees. Great work.

 

 

(9/10)

 

 

Tracklist:

  1. Awaken From The Dark Slumber (Spring)
  2. The Forest That Weeps (Summer)
  3. Eternal Darkness (Autumn)
  4. Loneliness (Winter)

 

 

Label: Nuclear Blast

 

Genre: Melodic Death Metal

Release Date EU: July 21st, 2017

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CD review PRIMORDIAL "Gods to the Godless - Live at BYH 2015"

Veröffentlicht am 25. November 2016 von Markus W. in Primordial, Pagan Metal, Death Metal, Thrash Metal, Heavy Metal, Folk Metal, News, CD Review

(8/10) It was in 2015 when Irish pagan metal band Primordial played a show at the well-established Band Your Head festival in Balingen, Germany. If I counted right it was the band's second appearance after having played there already three years earlier.

This time Primordial didn't play the open air stage. The guys from Dublin performed at the Messehalle which gave the set a darker and more intensive environment, something the bands music is benefiting a lot. Even though you can't visually experience this on CD and vinyl, it still impacted the peformence and the vibe of the eleven songs performed that night.

The start of the show is a silent and melodic one with an underlaying malevolence that's slowly rising. "Gods to the Godless" is not only the name giver for this live album, it's also the first song played during this 80 minutes long set. The opener goes back to the early days of the band, followed by two songs from the latest studio output from the Celtic metal band. The melancholic "Babel's Tower" and the heavy pounding "Where Greater Men Have Fallen" are good stuff of recent date.

Another benfit is the production of this album that is done very well. "Gods to the Godless" sounds real. It comes across as an album that didn't went through a lot of adjustments and tuning afterwards. It gives the listener an authentic feeling of this live show, something a record like this should deliver.

"Gods to the Godless" is Primordial's second live album and since the setlist of the recorded show in Balingen was quite different from the songs that are perpetuated on "All Empires Fall", this release also makes a lot of sense. It gives a great overview on the more recent Primordial songs.

This live album is a great x-mas gift for Primordial fans and it's a collection of great songs of the Dublin-based band that give new fans a good idea of the band's creative work so far.

 

(8/10)

 

Tracklist:

  1. Gods to the Godless
  2. Babels Tower
  3. Where Greater Men Have Fallen
  4. No Grave Deep Enough
  5. As Rome Burns
  6. The Alchemists Head
  7. Bloodied Yet Unbowed
  8. The Coffin Ships
  9. Heathen Tribes
  10. Wield Lightning to Split the Sun
  11. Empire Falls

 

Label: Metal Blades

Genre: Pagan Metal

Release Date EU: November 25th, 2016

CD review PRIMORDIAL "Gods to the Godless - Live at BYH 2015"
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Some news about PRIMORDIAL's coming live album

Veröffentlicht am 17. November 2016 von Markus W. in Primordial, Pagan Metal, News, Power Metal, Thrash Metal, Heavy Metal, Folk Metal

Some news about PRIMORDIAL's coming live album

Irish Pagan Metallers Primordial have announced the release of the first live album in the bands history. 'Gods To The Godless (Live At BYH 2015)' will see the light of day next week Friday, November, 25th and will be released as a limited Digibook-CD and 2-Gatefold-LP!

Says A.A. Nemtheanga of
Primordial: "It might seem like an unusual move, a double live album. Especially within the scene we are from but the live album was once a staple of most bands career and something we all grew up with in our collection. Pouring over tour dates, gear information and killer live pics. Ok so it's not 'Live After Death' but you can see the attraction and taste the romance involved, right? Fact is though we hadn't planned it, it was basically a happy coincidence, the good people at Bang Your head who took such a risk booking us the first time on a more traditional old school rock festival had us back for the fourth time, gave us a proper headlining set length and happened to mention afterwards that they had a mobile recording device rigged up and ready to go. When we listened back to the tapes we found something we could work with and the idea take shape. If you love the band you will know what to expect, blood, guts and passion and believe us the double vinyl will look beautiful! If we've been in your orbit but you've never trained your sights on us properly this might be a good place to start as the sound is massive, the old songs have some added muscle and the planets aligned to make 'Gods to the Godless' perhaps a great introduction to the band. From our side, it felt like something important to do, like taking advantage of an opportunity to make not only a stand alone album in it's own right but also add something rich to the heritage and tapestry of metal that once hinged on the live album, the tradition reached back into the 70s and 80s and we are proud to have our own small place in that pantheon! And for the record…not one single over dub. This is truly Live and Dangerous…"



Tracklisting 'Gods To The Godless (Live At BYH 2015)':
1. Gods to the Godless (Live)
2. Babels Tower (Live)
3. Where Greater Men Have Fallen (Live)
4. No Grave Deep Enough (Live)
5. As Rome Burns (Live)
6. The Alchemists Head (Live)
7. Bloodied Yet Unbowed (Live)
8. The Coffin Ships (Live)
9. Heathen Tribes (Live)
10. Wield Lightning to Split the Sun (Live)
11. Empire Falls (Live)

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Special ENSLAVED shows in Oslo in December

Veröffentlicht am 15. Oktober 2016 von Markus W. in Enslaved, News, Death Metal, Black Metal, Pagan Metal, Folk Metal, New, Tour

'Oslo by Norse' features three shows of Norwegian metal icons and Grammy award-winners Enslaved, performing three nights in a row with different sets. The shows will take place at Blå, Oslo, from December 6yh to December 8th.

Enslaved will perform songs from their entire career, supported by bands like Oblieration, Virus and Maraton. Furthermore there are workshops included like the one from Einar Selvik from Wardruna which is about ancient Norwegian instruments and also an exhibition with pictures by Kim Holm is part of this three days event.

Ivar Bjørnson says: "London is already a most dear memory, New York has been long time announced. Now it is time to reveal the first Norwegian By Norse event; Oslo By Norse!
It will mark the beginning of the end; of a fantastic year where we have marked 25 years as a band. We will do three unique sets, divided by periods Beginning-Mid periods Later day Enslaved.
The special guest bands are of the "pinch me, I must be dreaming"-type; Obliteration, Virus and Maraton!?!? Is all these first-choice guys accepting the invite some kind of sick joke? If not, it has got to be one of the best billing ever. Subjectively speaking. Ugh!
There will also be an intimate workshop with our brother-in-arms Einar Selvik (followed by a panel led by yours truly), ink by poking (tattoo the Viking way) set up in the venue (!) by the legendary Ihuda Tattoo and live graphic art by the eternally young Kim Holm. I almost wish I were not playing so I could just experience this. Then again I would go crazy from not working. Hope to see you all at Oslo By Nors
e!!!"

Special ENSLAVED shows in Oslo in December
Special ENSLAVED shows in Oslo in December
Special ENSLAVED shows in Oslo in December
Special ENSLAVED shows in Oslo in December
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CD review INSOMNIUM "Winter's Gate"

Veröffentlicht am 24. September 2016 von Markus W. in Insomnium, CD Review, News, Death Metal, Pagan Metal, Thrash Metal, Heavy Metal

(9/10) Waltari did it, Edge Of Sanity did it and now it's Insomnium that does it as well - releasing an album that comes with one song of epical length - a story, a mind-movie, a masterpiece, all in one song on one album.

Things started with the guys listening to Edge Of Sanity's "Crimson". From this moment on Insomnium the idea of "Winter's Gate" was born, an album that contains more than 'just' great music. Such an album and such a song needs a solid story that acts as a base and a link between the several parts of such a musical marathon.

It played into the band's hands that Niilo Sevänen wrote a short story called "Winter's Gate" which tells the tale of a group of vikings who "set out to find a fable island Northwest from Ireland". This short story won already some awards in 2007 and 2008 in Sevänen's homecountry Finland and is actually included in the Gatefold LP+CD package as a booklet.

After the concept has been set it was time to think about the music. "Winter's Gate" became an exciting piece of music that starts slow and melacholic. It comes very sphereful and draws a sonic picture of wide landscapes that give a peaceful mind. But harmony doesn't last forever and already after half a minute the song develops to a heavy stomper. Still having some keyboards in the lead, guitars become more dominant, taking over with a mighty riff a bit later. The deep growls of Sevänen give the song an additional harshness by constantly keeping a certain level of melody in this mighty piece of music. After the peaceful beginning of this composition the continuation of the song feels more like an brutal winterstorm that makes everybody looking for some shelter.
And since a storm doesn't last forever, in this case 40 minutes, Insomnium was smart enough to place same breaks here and there. After seven minutes things get more sphereful again, supported by some acoustic guitars and spoken words.
This is just some examples of Insomnium's brillance of keeping this epical masterpiece exciting - from beginning till end. The more silent moments are coming back here and there, always counteracted by heavy outbursts that unveil Insomnium's metal heart.
You could watch movies, you could read books or you can lean back, close your eyes and start your own movie while listening to this longplayer.
Insomnium created an album that features musical finesse (enriched by a mix and mastering done by nobody else than Dan Swano himself), storytelling brilliance and emotional intensity. This album belongs to the great ones in 2016, a release that stands out from the masses.

 

(9/10)

 

Tracklist:

  1. Winter's Gate

 

Label: Century Media

Genre: Epic Death Metal

Release Date EU: September 23rd, 2016

 

CD review INSOMNIUM "Winter's Gate"
CD review INSOMNIUM "Winter's Gate"
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New WALDRUNA album in autumn

Veröffentlicht am 9. August 2016 von Markus W. in Waldruna, Black Metal, Folk, Pagan Metal, News, Tour

The last part of Waldruna's trilogy is entitles "Runaljod – Ragnarok" and will be released on October 21st, 2016 through Norse Music.

In short, the ambitious idea behind the trilogy was to create musical interpretations of each of the twenty-four old Nordic runes. It proved to be a lengthy and challenging task. Some of the material on the album even date back to 2003 and the early stages of the project, when multi-instrumentalist and songwriter Einar Selvik started to develop the genre-defying sound and style that Wardruna have become known for. It is a contemporary sound, but one that is characterized by the use of old and historical instruments like Kraviklyra, taglharpe, goat horns, birchbark lures and more. The vocals range from whispering voices to melodic song and mighty choirs. All performed with sincerity and conviction.

 

Tracklist:

  1. Tyr
  2. UruR
  3. Isa
  4. MannaR – Drivande
  5. MannaR – Liv
  6. Raido
  7. Pertho
  8. Odal
  9. Wunjo
  10. Runaljod

 

Tourdates:
12 Nov. Leipzig - Kumpelhalle / Eventpalast (DE)
13 Nov. Lodz, Wytwórnia - (PL) - SOLD OUT
15 Nov. Utrecht, TivoliVredenburg, Symphonic Hall (NL) - SOLD OUT
17 Nov. London, Union Chapel (UK) (Zusatzkonzert)
17 Nov. London, Union Chapel (UK) - SOLD OUT
18 Nov. Paris, Trabendo (FR) - SOLD OUT
19 Nov. Utrecht, TivoliVredenburg, Symphonic Hall (NL) - SOLD OUT
25 Nov. Stockholm, Nalen (SE) -(Einar Selvik Solo)
26 Nov. Stockholm, Nalen (SE) - SOLD OUT
25 Nov. Stockholm, Nalen (SE) (Zusatzkonzert)
30 Nov. Malmö, Slagthuset (SE)
01 Dec. Kopenhagen, Portalen (DK)
09 Dec. New York By Norse, New York, USA (Einar Selvik Solo)
21 Jan. Oslo, Setrum Scene (NO)


 

New WALDRUNA album in autumn
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CD review MOONSORROW "Jumalten Aika"

Veröffentlicht am 9. April 2016 von Markus W. in Moonsorrow, Black Metal, Pagan Metal, Folk Metal, Heavy Metal, News, CD Review

(8/10) The only walls I can accept nowadays are walls of sound. Actually I love them. This time it's Finnish pagan powerhouse that builds those walls on their new longplayer "Jumalten Aika".

The guys from Helsinki, Finland do not need a lot of songs to create this sound monumemt. The current album is limited to five tunes whereof four come with an epical length.

Easily crossing the 10 minutes boarder Moonsorrow created musical masterpieces that reflect black metal roots as well as a lot of folk and tradition. It's impressive how much power these guys bring up to surface.

Just take "Mimisbrunn" as an example. The start is silent with gurgling water and an acoustic guitar. It's such a beginning that already starts create pictures in your mind. After a while a harsh riff rips up the romantic vibe and the tune turns into a heavy but wistful metal track that is kept in midpace. The riffing is almost hypnotic with Ville Sorvali's plangorous vocals. Some choir sections give this tune even more intensity and in the end "Mimisbrunn" is more than just a song. It's storytelling by using the entire spectra of emotionalizing music.

I picked this song because I think it's the best. But actually the other four tracks are no slouch either and are on the same high level.

"Jumalten Aika" is an excellent longplayer that combines many influences to a total that is thrilling from beginning to end. Hot stuff from the cold North.

 

(8/10)

 

Tracklist

  1. Jumalten Aika
  2. Ruttolehto Incl. Päivättömän Päivän Kansa
  3. Suden Tunti
  4. Mimisbrunn
  5. Ihmisen Aika (Kumarrus Pimeyteen)

 

Label: Century Media

Genre: Pagan Metal

Release Date EU: April 1st, 2016

CD review MOONSORROW "Jumalten Aika"
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CD review ENSIFERUM "Two Decades of Greatest Swords Hits"

Veröffentlicht am 30. März 2016 von Markus W. in Ensiferum, Folk Metal, Pagan Metal, News, CD Review, Heavy Metal

(*/10) Also this "Best of..." album will not answer the question about the 'why'. It might make sense for collectors and rookies, but each fan normally calls the regular records already their own.

This time it's Ensiferum that releases a "Best of..." album to celebrate their 20st anniversary. But actually the album doesn't look back on the entire career of the band. "Two Decades of Great Sword Hits" is only featuring songs from the first five records of the finnish warriors, a time when they had Spinefarm as their label. This means there is no song from the latest record on this longplayer, since "One Man Army" was released via Metal Blade.

Anyhow, what to say you don't know already. Classics like "Token of Time" found a spot on the tracklist as well as 'newer' songs such as "In My Sword I Trust". Each of the tunes that made it on this album is well chosen and it reflects in my point of view the journey of Ensiferum very well.

It would have been nice though, if there would have been one or two new songs on this longplayer too. Or it would have been even better to enrich this release with a live DVD. At least something extra would have been great for the fans.

Not having this included in "20 Decades of Great Sword Hits" means, that there isn't anything new for Ensiferum fans. Therefore I can sum it up like that: great band with great songs, produced in an excellent way...but nothing new at all. And since all this is a fact I recommend the regular releases.

 

(*/10)

 

Tracklist:

  1. By the Dividing Stream
  2. Heathen Horde
  3. One More Magic Portion
  4. In My Sword I Trust
  5. Token of Time
  6. Dragonhead
  7. Twilight Tavern
  8. Burning Leaves
  9. Treacherous Gods
  10. Lai Lai Hei
  11. Two of Spades
  12. Iron
  13. From Afar
  14. Victory Song

 

Label: Spinefarm

Genre: Folk Metal

Release Date EU: April 1st, 2016

CD review ENSIFERUM "Two Decades of Greatest Swords Hits"
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CD review Ivar Bjørnson & Einar Selvik’s Skuggsjá "Skuggsjá"

Veröffentlicht am 8. März 2016 von Markus W. in Ivar Bjørnson, Einar Selvik, Enslaved, Wardruna, Folk, Pagan Metal, Heavy Metal, Prog Rock, News

(8/10) There are some records that are just exciting to listen to because they demand quite something from you as the listener; records that develop existing sounds further, that are demanding and still approachable.

"Skuggsjá" is one of those longplayers that are thrilling because they offer you a great possibility to dive into new soundscapes that are mind-blowing.

But let's start at the beginning. You might know the names of the two main guys behind this album. Ivar Bjørnson is guitarist and composer of Norwegian Enslaved, while Einar Selvik is the creative mind of Wardruna. The two guys have been the curators of 2015th Roadburn festival in Tilburg which included special shows of both bands - Enslaved and Wardruna.

The next fruitful output of this duo is the album we're taliing about in this review. "Skuggsjá" is the name of this longplayer, a Norwegian word that means ' mirror' or 'reflection'. Nomen et omen in this context since this longplayer reflects the Norwegian inheritage very well when it comes to language, poetry and instruments.

This album can be seen as metallized progressive folk rock that includes harsh guitars ("Makta Og Vanæra, For All Tid") next to almost forgotten old Scandianvian instruments. But also when it comes to the vocals things get pretty exciting. Starting with narrative style vocals ("Intro: Ull Kjem") the album includes as well fragile and beautiful female vocals, all this being completed by almost blackened metal screams here and there. In the end it's four persons sharing the vocal duties - Bjørnson, Selvik, Grutle Kjellson and Lindy-Fay Hella.

This album is more than just a record. "Skuggsjá" sets the Norwegian heritage to music in such a way that the listener almost gets the impression of being part of this exciting moment in time. This longplayer combines musical experience, endless passion and emotional depth to a pretty unique listening experience which demands time. Take your time and dive into the world of "Skuggsjá".

 

(8/10)

 

Tracklisting

  1. Intro: Ull Kjem
  2. Skuggsjá
  3. Makta Og Vanæra, For All Tid
  4. Tore Hund
  5. Rop Fra Røynda - Mælt Fra Minne
  6. Skuggeslåtten (instrumental)
  7. Kvervandi
  8. Vitkispá
  9. Bøn Om Ending, Bøn Om Byrjing
  10. Outro: Ull Gjekk
  11. Skaldens Song Til Tore Hund (Bonus tracks deluxe Digipak)
  12. Quantum Pasts (Rop Frå Røynda - Bardspec Ed) (Bonus tracks deluxe Digipak)

 

Label: Season Of Mist

Genre: Pagan Metal

Release Date EU: March 11th, 2016

 CD review Ivar Bjørnson & Einar Selvik’s Skuggsjá "Skuggsjá"
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PRIMORDIAL on tour in April

Veröffentlicht am 30. Januar 2016 von Markus W. in Primordial, Ketzer, Svartidaudi, Heavy Metal, Pagan Metal, Black Metal, Thrash Metal

Irish metallers Primordial will be on tour late spring this year, supported by Svartidaudi and Ketzer. 

Here are the dates:

PRIMORDIAL on tour in April
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CD review BORKNAGAR "Winter Thrice"

Veröffentlicht am 17. Januar 2016 von Markus W. in Borknagar, Pagan Metal, News, CD Review, Death Metal, Black Metal, Viking Metal

(8/10) It's not that easy to describe Borknagar's sound. Of course you could say that we are talking about viking metal, but I think that this wouldn't cover the entire range of sounds that are coming together on a Borknagar album.

"Winter Thrice" is the newest longplayer of the Bergen-based band and it can easily take it up with the predecessors. "Winter Thrice" is Borknagar's tenth album in their so far twenty years long lasting career and it's doubtless one of the best ones too.

Eight songs with epical length provides you with an almost 60 minutes long fireworks of metal that you can't escape from.

The Norwegian soul comes back in each of the songs. Especially the folk elements contribute to this a lot, but also the pathos and emotionalism that comes with each of the numbers makes the album to more than just another metal record. "Winter Thrice" gives you a chance to dive into soundscapes that are filled with the mentioned folk elements, nagging black metal eruptions, blastbeats, clean melodic vocals lines, progressive song structures and pathetic storytelling.

Borknagar's newest longplayer is far more than 'just' another black metal based viking metal album. It merges Pink Floyd inspired soundscapes with blastbeats like in the epical "Terminus", it has melancholic moments ("Panorama") and combines melodies with harsh black metal attacks. All this can be found back on one album and all fits together. By all diversity "Winter Thrice" is a homogenous masterpiece that tells a story with different shades.

Interesting enough is the fact that the shortest tune is the most silent one too. "Noctilucent" is a straight number with clean vocals, representing the more 'sunny' side of Bergen.

"Winter Thrice" became the expected longplayer that puts a spell on the listener. Great soundscapes meet dark black metal outbursts. And it is this felt contradiction which creates the tension that makes this Borknagar album that thrilling. "Winter Thrice" makes Borknagar playing in the same league as Amorphis and the earlier Opeth.

 

(8/10)

 

Tracklist:

  1. The Rhymes of the Mountain
  2. Winter Thrice
  3. Cold Runs the River
  4. Panorama
  5. When Chaos Calls
  6. Erodent
  7. Noctilucent
  8. Terminus

 

Label: Century Media

Genre: Viking Metal

Release Date EU: January 22nd, 2016

CD review BORKNAGAR "Winter Thrice"
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CD review VARG "Das Ende aller Lügen"

Veröffentlicht am 28. Dezember 2015 von Markus W. in Varg, Pagan Metal, Thrash Metal, News, CD Review, Death Metal

(2/10) Varg has never been one of my most favorite bands and the new album will not change anything. After the single release "Rotkäppchen" the new full-length album "Das Ende aller Lugen" will hit the record shops in January and I can say already at this stage that the controversy discussions probably will not stop with this release.

The album begins with one of the most touching moments in cineastic history. It's the speech of Charlie Chaplin in "The Great Dictator" when he talks about freedom and humanity. This speech is always a moment when a shiver runs over me.

However, I wonder why Varg puts this speech as an intro on top of the tracklist. Is it to make a statement against all the demons of the past? To me, not really if I listen to lyrics like in "The End of All Lies".

Is it, that humanity and freedom should be the overall message on this album? The intro might gives you this impression. But what wonders me is what's the link between Chaplin's speech and the brutal lyrics about killing, slitting throats and so on. Those lyrics are about 'fight' and not about 'humanity' and 'freedom'. Or just bring together the message of the speech and the cover of this album. The gap couldn't be bigger.

Don't get me wrong here, nothing against splatter lyrics in death metal and I do like bands like Cannibal Corpse and Obituary. But my question is: what's the point here? I think that Chaplin would turn over in his grave while seeing his movie scene in such a context. I have to say that all this sounds very strange to me in times when the focus should be on 'unite' and not 'divide'.

Furthermore the album comes in two versions. One is in English and there is a German version too. On the one hand this is a nice extra that for sure was also more costly than just releasing one version only. But also here is the question 'why'? What's the point?

I would have loved to pay more attention to the music, but there isn't that much to tell. It's again this mic of thrash and melodic death metal with some metalcore elements. The songs don't sound bad, but there are also bands out there that play the same kind of music, just moe thrilling.

All this together leads to 2 points. The music itself gets 4 points and the lyrics are a clearly 0. I would definitely invest my money into something else. An album that helps to leave the past behind looks differently from this.

 

(2/10)

 

Tracklist:

German:

  1. Der grosse Diktator
  2. Das Ende aller Lügen
  3. Revolution
  4. Streyfzug
  5. Achtung
  6. Dunkelheit
  7. Totentanz
  8. Einherjer
  9. Winterstrum
  10. Ascheregen

English:

  1. The Great Dictator
  2. The End of All Lies
  3. Revolution
  4. Streyfzug
  5. Achtung
  6. Darkness
  7. The Dance of Death
  8. Einherjer
  9. Winterstorm
  10. Rain of Ashes

 

Label: Napalm Records

Genre: Pagan Metal

Release Date EU: January 15th, 2016

 

 

 

CD review VARG "Das Ende aller Lügen"
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CD review VARG "Rotkäppchen" EP

Veröffentlicht am 6. Oktober 2015 von Markus W. in Varg, Pagan Metal, Viking Metal, Black Metal, Heavy Metal, News, CD Review

(6/10) German pagan band Varg have a new EP release ready to be published. After all the controverial discussions (and I will open this box again) during the last years the band is working on a new album called "Das Ende aller Lügen" and the current EP is an appetizer to bridge the waiting time.

The title track is called "Rotkäpchen 2015" which is German for 'Red Riding Hood'.  The song is a pure pagan metal beast with a big portion of folk. Next to the title track itself the EP offers you also an English-, an Norwegian-, the 2011 original-, a Bierzelt- and a karaoke version. That's a lot of 'Rotkäppchen' on one disc.

Furthermore you will get two new songs. "Ein Tag wie heute" and "Abendrot" are harsh viking metal tracks, built on a heavy riffing and screeching vocal by Seiler.

Pagan metal doesn't belong to my favorite metal styles and also "Rotkäppchen" will not change this. But fans of Varg will enjoy this EP and don't have to hesitate buying it. For all the others I would say: Not bad but also no milestone.

 

(6/10)

 

Tracklist:

  1. Rotkäppchen 2015
  2. Ein Tage wie heute
  3. Abendrot
  4. Red Riding Hood
  5. Rødhette
  6. Rotkäppchen 2011
  7. Rotkäppchen 2015 Karaoke
  8. Rotkäppchen im Bierzelt

 

Label: Naplam Records

Genre: Pagan Metal

Release date EU: October 9th, 2015

 

CD review VARG "Rotkäppchen" EP
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CD review HEIDEVOLK "Velua"

Veröffentlicht am 26. März 2015 von Markus W. in Heidevolk, Pagan Metal, Power Metal, Heavy Metal, CD Review, News

(7/10) Normally pagan metal isn't my favourite metal genre. The pathos and the myth isn't what really are thrilling to me. I always feel a bit like ‘Lord of the rings’ squeezed in denim and leather. Therefore I was sceptic when I received the new album Heidevolk. 

But I must say that the band from Arnhem, The Netherlands, surprised me. Their fifth full-length album is full of powerful metal. Yes, there are folk/pagan sequences but there are the more power metal-like moments as well. And those are the ones I really appreciate on “Velua”.

In addition the band from Gelderland kept the lyrics in Dutch which gives them a kind of uniqueness.

So, besides the pathos and image, what about the music? As said, I was happily surprised that Heidevolk uses more downtuned guitars than flutes and other medieval instruments. The sounds quite heavy and the crunchy riffs make the album to an interesting one. 

The pagan/folk influences are coming back in tunes like the title song and "Drankgelag". Those songs are well crafted but don't really give me the shiver. My preference goes more to tracks like the opener "Winter woede" are more strong metal anthems with even some growls included. That sounds actually pretty cool. And also the heavy "Herboren in vlammen" is a mighty beast that crawls out of your speakers. Another highlight is "In het diepst der nacht" which has a gloomy expression, a crunchy guitar sound and a good vocal line.

The sound of the album is powerful and has the right punch. 

So, all in all a positive surprise. "Velua" is an album that finds the right mix between pathos and metal which makes it also accessible for a bigger audience. 

 

(7/10)

 

Tracklist:

  1. Winter woede
  2. Herboren in vlammen
  3. Urth
  4. De hallen van mijn vaderen
  5. De vervloekte jacht
  6. Het dwalende licht
  7. Drankgelag
  8. Velua
  9. Eet met de storm
  10. Richting de wievenbelter
  11. In het dieps der nacht
  12. Vinland

 

Label: Napalm Records

Genre: Pagan Metal

CD review HEIDEVOLK "Velua"
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