Ankit Sood

Narnia – “From Darkness to Light”

 Posted by on August 19, 2019 at 17:20  No Responses »
Aug 192019
 

On 2nd August 2019, Narnia released their 8th Studio album “From Darkness to Light”.  Founded by guitarist Carl Johan Grimmark and singer Christian Liljegren back in 1996, the Swedish band reunited in 2014 after its hiatus in 2010. This album is produced and primarily written by Narnia’s guitar virtuoso CJ Grimmark. It is mixed by the band’s sound engineer Viktor Stenquist, and mastered by Jens Bogren, Fascination Street Studios.

The band is widely known for their progressive sound, odd time signatures and cut throat guitar melody. Their songs are influenced by the works of “The Chronicles of Narnia – By C.S. Lewis”. It is being said that keyboardist Martin Härenstam, holds the calibre of a solo virtuoso in the band. Jonatan Samuelsson who recently joined on Bass duties and background vocals, plays the Taurus bass pedal, and helps with the songwriting and graphic designing of the album. Their last tour of Brazil was a success and they carried over the same energy into writing this album.

To be honest, this is the first time I’m listening to Narnia, so I haven’t any biases or idea of what I’m getting into. The staccato opening on “A crack in the sky” filled in with ambient soundscapes and a melodic guitar solo goes on to set my expectation, and boy I love how the song progresses and possesses its audience. The vocals are melodic, the chorus gives you the shrills with the added seconds, and a powerful rhythm section drives the song forward which culminates with an electrifying guitar solo. “You Are The Air That I Breathe” thumps its way forward, building the pace piece by piece. This song sounds straight out of the 70s-80s and has a catchy chorus to its credit. Continue reading »

Eluveitie – “Ategnatos”

 Posted by on July 28, 2019 at 20:47  No Responses »
Jul 282019
 

The much anticipated Eighth Studio album from the Swiss Folk metal band Eluveitie, “Ategnatos” comes out after 2 years from their last release “Evocation II: Pantheon”.  It was released on the 5th of April 2019 through Nuclear Blast Records. Founded by Chrigel Glanzmann back in 2002, they are known for incorporating traditional instruments such as the likes of Hurdy Gurdy,  flutes, violin, bagpipes, tin whistles to name a few.  Their sound has a blend of Celtic folk melodies with Gothenburg styled Melodic death metal and vocals often written in English and ancient extinct Gaulish.

Often referred to as the The New wave folk metal, “Eluveitie” is interpreted in the Etruscan language as “The Swiss” and ever since its formation has known to have huge line-up (An average of 9 members).  The band has had couple of line-up changes over the years, as they tried to reinvent themselves and find their sound. Folk metal presents itself with tremendous opportunity as there is so much room for experimentation and song writing. With Pantheon being one of my favorite albums I take upon myself to be unbiased when I write this down. The album runs for an hour and has 16 songs in its arsenal.

The album opens up with title track building on cinematic soundscapes, supplemented with narration (Alexander Morton) as folk elements and a barrage of guitar riffs seep in. The song picks up pace as it progresses and astonishes with a catchy chorus towards the end. “Ancus” transitions to “Deathwalker” which opens up to a beautiful melody and with no time catches you off guard with a meaty riff. The guttural vocals adds tremendous energy and the fiddle soloing to an operatic chorus adds a great flavor to the song. “Black water Dawn” refreshes with a hypnotic flute tune dancing on a catchy rhythm, Fabienne Erni chimes in with a beautiful vibrato adding a new dimension to this song, as it progresses. Continue reading »

Jun 242019
 

Shadow Puncher is a brutal death metal solo project founded in 2016 by Max Kevin Ølstøren who plays the guitar, programs the drum and provides vocal and bass duties. The band began as a death metal/black metal project out of Trondheim, Norway in Europe, releasing demos with hand drawn art. The first album, “To Victory we March” was released on the 14th of March 2019.

The project and label announced on August 20, 2018, that they were releasing a compilation of all three independent EPs titled One Path to the Heavenly Kingdom. The project is currently working on their first full-length album, a cover of Cannibal Corpse with Symphony of Heaven, a song coming on a compilation between The Bearded Dragon Productions and Love Your Enemies Records, and will appear on a split album of Symphony of Heaven, Bismoth, and Timōrātus, providing backing vocals for the final band. The band will also be releasing a cover of “We Wish You a Merry Christmas” through The Bearded Dragon Productions and Rottweiler Records.

The album has an impressive set of 15 songs spanning across an hour, so without further ado lets jump to it.  The album opens up with the ambient soundscapes of “Interlude” which paints a vivid image as you hear, keys, viola and marching drums giving a grand introduction to the album. Next up, with “Visions” Max starts off with an ambient hymn, which transfigures into heavy guitar chugs with an odd time signature. The guitar tones are really low and muffled that accentuates the guttural vocals and gives out a djent feel to an otherwise death metal song. Continue reading »

Implement – “Bleeding Alone”

 Posted by on June 3, 2019 at 17:28  No Responses »
Jun 032019
 

For 17 long years, Implement has remained underground playing a number of fests and releasing music videos over the years. Bleeding alone being their first studio album has had a long wait, was released in March 2019.  The production on the album started in 2016 in Mr. Prog. Studio in their hometown Recife and with the production, mix and master by Nenel Lucena (Bride, N.O.G), the album shows us a powerful death metal sound with elements of thrash metal and grindcore, for fans of Deicide, Cannibal Corpse and Crimson Thorn.

“Wreckage” opens up with eerie and ghastly soundscapes and quickly moves to “Infernum Brothel” which pulverizes and pounds upon you with a meaty riff sounding a mix of grindcore and death metal right from the beginning. “Worm in my brain” has a scathing vocal delivery and crunchy guitar bits to its credit but the vocals have little variation and no guitar solos. Next up is the title track “Bleeding Alone” which delivers a chunky riff, and moves on to a catchy tune as we progress. The song is definitely one of the heaviest on the album and finally bring out a solo. Continue reading »

Skald In Veum – “Stridslysten”

 Posted by on April 28, 2019 at 18:05  No Responses »
Apr 282019
 

How do you justify an introduction to a band that has been brewing ferocious black metal since 1998? Skald, as a previous Avatar of Skald in Veum, has remained underground for as long as 15 years. Although there wasn’t much offered during those years, the band kept its energy intact as they emerged back in the Swedish scene again in 2013. Changing their name to add a reference to a Holy place, the band sets out with a mission, “a violent and visceral baptism by way of complete immersion in brutalising black metal”

Having signed up with Rottweiler Record and Nordic Mission, the band released its second album, Stridslysten, on the 12th of April 2019. What stands amazing is that, they released their second album exactly 1260 days after the release of their first album titled 1260 days. Too much of a coincidence? Does Stridslysten have something encrypted in its name too? I want to find out.

This album has one of the most brutal intro to any song that I’ve heard in a while. Self-titled “Stridslysten” starts with a bang of what sounds like a sword being pulled from its sheath. Continue reading »