ALBUM REVIEW: Rotting Christ – Pro Xristou


Whilst veteran darkened Gothic Metallers Rotting Christ have been with renowned label Season Of Mist for seventeen years, the partnership seems to have particularly flourished with a quadrilogy of albums that began ten years ago with the revered Κατά τον δαίμονα εαυτού (or, Katá ton Daímona Eaytoy). The 2013 release saw a progression of their sound to a fuller, more refined and stately entity. That proud style and sound has been polished and shaped through the last decade, culminating in ΠΡΟ ΧΡΙΣΤΟU (Pro Xristou). Continue reading


CONCERT REVIEW: Týr – Trollfest – Æther Realm – The Dread Crew of Oddwood Live at Sanctuary


The illustrious Nordic act, Týr brought their Battle Ballads headlining tour to North America and Motor City was one of their stops. The band is out promoting their new full-length album bringing along Trollfest, Æther Realm, and The Dread Crew of Oddwood with them. This highly anticipated month-long run designated the Sanctuary in Hamtramck, a neighboring borough of Detroit, to share all their fabulous folk festivities with.Continue reading


ALBUM REVIEW: TÝR – Battle Ballads


Photo by Gaui H.For their ninth full-length studio release, Battle Ballads (Metal Blade), Faroe Islanders Týr bring more of their brand of Viking themed folk metal to the banqueting hall but this time come armed with an orchestra. Sort of.Continue reading


ALBUM REVIEW: Vansind – Mørket


 

While Scandinavia is famed for its abundance of folk and Viking metal, most of these acts tend to hail from Norway and Sweden rather than Denmark. Even noisy Nordic neighbours Finland seem to produce more acts from the genre; Iceland also giving the Danes a run for their money.

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ALBUM REVIEW: Doro – Conqueress – Forever Strong And Proud


 

Doro Pesch is the epitome of a metal repping lifer. Not just one of the nicest people in metal who regularly remembers everyone’s birthday and a constant genre cheerleader, but also one of the greatest front-people to ever hype up a crowd. Her heartfelt and classic albums have stood the test of time and embodies “True Heavy Metal” just as much as a masculine landmark like Manowar‘s ‘Louder Than Hell’.

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CONCERT REVIEW: Ghosts of Atlantis – Existentialist – Draugrheim Live at Colchester Arts Centre


 

No review from the Colchester Arts Centre would be complete without hailing the best small venue in the UK. Able to host 400 when packed to the architraves, its post-COVID refurb has cleaned up and modernised where needed (toilets, bars), whilst maintaining the features and character that every converted church that is now a gig-hosting venue should. Added to that, great views and a powerful sound-system, and the stage is quite literally set for a much more adventurous and welcome Tuesday night than you might normally get in the Britain’s oldest (and newest – Google it) city*

*It’ll always be a town, to me.

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ALBUM REVIEW: Skálmöld – Ýdalir



Ages of swords may one day perish but its legacy will forever reign in the eternity of Valhalla– or so I think. Skálmöld, whose name literally translates as Age of Swords, are back on leading yet another Viking battle, with their highly anticipated sixth full-length album entitled Ýdalir (Napalm Records), which has released some other Nordic folk/viking metal counterparts as well such as Brymir and Månegarm.

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CONCERT REVIEW: Enslaved – Insomnium – Black Anvil Live at Saint Andrew’s Hall


 

It was a typical, quiet Monday evening last week in downtown Detroit. Except at the city’s treasured music venue, Saint Andrew’s Hall. There was a bit of a hullabaloo happening at the preferred concert spot because metal titans, Enslaved and Insomnium brought their North American co-headlining tour to town. Both of these acts are experts in their respective genres and both of them are on the road to promote their newest full-length albums that have come out earlier this year. The place was buzzing with anticipation as metal fans of all sorts filed in to hear the new tunes.

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ALBUM REVIEW: Darkwoods My Betrothed – Angel Of Carnage Unleashed


One of the more fascinating projects to be revived during everyone’s pandemic-induced free time, Darkwoods My Betrothed has returned with their first album since 1998’s Witch-Hunts. Angel of Carnage Unleashed (Napalm Records) sustains their old style for the most part, showing off a variant of Viking Black Metal with hearty Symphonic flourishes. Of course, it’s always interesting to see how time will toy with a preexisting formula, especially one that has gone undisturbed for twenty-three years.

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ALBUM REVIEW: Enslaved – Utgard


Viking Metal started out by combining the epic energy of Black Metal with the mystical grace of Folk music. Enslaved is a band at the pinnacle of this heavy, Nordic sound. Starting out as teenagers, this Norweigian act has successively enhanced the Scandinavian metal scene for nearly thirty years. Their beginnings were more in the realm of the extreme, but over time Enslaved has not been afraid to dip into other genres like Prog Rock and Jazz. It’s encouraging to witness their ability to be undaunted by their explorations while still being true to their Viking roots. Their new fifteenth full-length album, Utgard (Nuclear Blast) verifies their astute ambition of experimentmentation and expression.

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