King of Asgard – :taudr: (Viking/Death Metal)

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This is one of those albums I’ve had to wait with before reviewing. Why you ask? Because I had to cool down before giving :taudr: my first listen. King of Asgard is a band I really like and hold in a high regard when it comes to viking metal (together with Thyrfing, Månegarm and Amon Amarth for example). That being said I’ve listened to this album several times and I still find this a good experience each freaking time. Before you even listen to this album you should grab yourself both some meed and beer, maybe even some snacks for the sake of it and get ready for a great time of raiding.

For those of you who doesn’t know about King of Asgard they are a creation of one of the members from Mithotyn Karl Beckmann. Keeping the viking spirit alive they have since then been making albums of high quality and their fourth conquest :tuadr: is of course no different. The memory of Mithotyn lives on in many ways with their releases as the songwriting and folk inspired melodies hits me with the same force as they once did. Having listened to a few tracks on :taudr: I know already that this is another great album to add to their already top notch discography. As a viking lover and a metal lover you just can’t get enough of King of Asgard that’s one thing that’s certain. Out of the five tracks on :taudr: there isn’t a single one I doesn’t like, however there are two tracks I find taking my breath away. Those two are Taudr and Upon Raging Waves, whereas the last one is a homage to everything Mithotyn has ever done. Basically if you want a viking experience this is the album, and the band to go for. Are you a fan of Mithotyn? This is the closest you can get! Love King of Asgard’s old albums? This is just as good if not better (have to say that …to North is hard to beat). Either way every fan of viking music will love this album! The atmosphere and music screams viking music!

King of Asgard’s fourth full-length album :taudr: is out now through Trollmusic.

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/kingofasgard
Label: Trollmusic
For fans of: Mithotyn and Thyrfing
Favorite song: Upon Raging Waves

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Drearyym – Precursions (Melodic Death Metal)

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I’ve reviewed some of the more seasoned bands from Finland so far with Noumena, Mors Principium Est and Wolfheart already granting us sweet melodic death metal releases. Now it’s time to go tapping into the talent pool of new and upcoming acts starting with Drearyym. Drearyym were formed in 2014 and has since then already been able to produce two EP’s and the full-length debut I am about to review Precursions. Precursions features the two songs from the bands second EP Precursions Part I as well as four new tracks. It’s actually quite astonishing that Drearyym are still alive and kicking after the rocky road the band has had with members coming and going during these three years, having had an especially hard time to find a stable drummer in the lineup. Not many bands that find the motivation to keep on going when the start hasn’t been what you might have thought it would be.

To start off these 45 minutes of Nordic tales and great wars is the 3 minute intro Draugr March. It works as a soft introduction to the album that fills it’s role with fantasy like sounding music that tells of the battles that are to come. It’s with In Obsidian we really hear what Drearyym are all about. The growling technique Leevi Kuunila does and battle-fuelled melodic death metal music you hear is influenced by the type of music you’ve heard the Finnish bands Brymir, Turisas and Frosttide perform. Bands I enjoy listening to so that isn’t a bad thing. 1.50 into In Obsidian the song takes a rather interesting turn, carnival music starts playing and it’s actually a smooth transition that doesn’t feel forced in and eventually fades out. A cool touch in my opinion. Nine Divines acoustic intro is a beautiful start that later turns into a brutal symphonic warzone just to five minutes in get some nice piano music together with a sweet guitar solo. These elements makes this song my favorite ones on the album and shows some of the bands diverse style in epic melodic death metal.

Hunter’sTale and Old Barn are also good songs and once Precursions is over I am feeling quite satisfied with Drearyym’s debut. It may not be perfect but for a debut from a band that’s already had some lineup struggles this is solid. Precursions is out now as an independent digital release.

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/Drearyym
Twitter: http://www.twitter.com/Drearyym1
For fans of: Frosttide and Brymir
Favorite song: Nine Divines

Siegelord – Ascent of the Fallen (Melodic Death Metal)

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Not too long ago I reviewed Winterhymn’s latest release Blood & Shadow. From Winterhymn Warg, Sieven and Ulfr left to form Siegelord in 2013 adding Therod on guitar. Even though the band has ties to Winterhymn the music differs quite a bit (my guess is that may even have been the reason they left to form Siegelord). Whereas Winterhymn plays folk metal mixed with black, death and power metal Siegelord is more towards melodic death metal with hints of black metal. Epic battles and mythology awaits the listener as Siegelord grants you a battlefield filled with bloodshed. Think of bands like Ex Deo, Amon Amarth and Dissection then you know which direction Siegelord are going.

While listening to Ascent of the Fallen I can’t help but draw a lot of parallels to the latest offering from Amon Amarth, Jomsviking. A melodic death metal concept album has been done before of course but this album has more in common with Jomsviking than anything else I’ve heard. The groovy riffs, harsh vocals and tales of war and battle simply makes me think of Amon Amarth. Like when I hear A Grim Destiny which then leads to Unkillable I can’t help but think of the opening track of Jomsviking, First Kill. This isn’t anything negative as I had Jomsviking set as my favorite album last year and if you also enjoyed it then you will also have a great time with Ascent of the Fallen. Siegelord delivers a dark fantasy world that even Tolkien would deem worthy.

Looking for a tale of epic proportions? A tale that involves war, betrayal and the birth to a new dark conqueror. If you are then Siegelord’s debut album Ascent of the Fallen will keep you more than occupied. A great debut and the future is bright for the Siegelords. Definitely an album that didn’t get the attention it deserved during 2016.

Ascent of the Fallen is out now as an independent release.

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/Siegelord
Twitter: http://www.twitter.com/siegelord
For fans of: Ex Deo and Amon Amarth
Favorite song: Totem

Wolfchant – Bloodwinter (Black/Pagan Metal)

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Wolfchant, one of the German powerhouses of folk/pagan metal. Since their debut Bloody Tales of Disgraced Lands in 2005 the band has only grown in popularity while having had quite a few lineup changes and ups and downs in their discography Wolfchant has still stayed strong. Bloodwinter is the bands sixth full-length album and it has actually been four years now since Embraced by Fire came out, which many sees as the bands second best album after the masterwork A Pagan Storm.

Wolfchant stick to what they do best, delivering a pagan storm the the masses. While I know a lot of people usually go “why isn’t Wolfchant innovating their sound!?” or something similar when bands stick to their sound for a long period of time there is also the fans who go completely opposite “why did Wolfchant change their sound!?”. Can’t please them all of course but at least you know what to expect from Wolfchant.

Bloodwinter is a good Wolfchant album. It’s an epic adventure with a good mix of harsh and clean vocals. Fans of Wolfchant will definitely have a good time with Bloodwinter and newcomers to the band can even start with this album, since the bands production quality has risen a lot since A Pagan Storm. Meaning Bloodwinter is probably the best first experience a new listener will get until they dig deeper into the bands discography.

Tracks such as Heritage of Fire, New Born Killer and Wolfchant (A Wolf to Man) are great Wolfchant tunes and the album overall is of good quality (some songs being better than others). I would put Bloodwinter as one of their three best releases (along with A Pagan Storm and Embraced by Fire) so if you’re on the lookout for some pagan metal Wolfchant got what you want.

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/wolfchantofficial
For fans of: Ensiferum and Equilibrium
Favorite song: Heritage of Fire