Saor – Origins

Origins Album Cover Art

Saor – Origins
Season Of Mist
Release Date: 24/06/2022
Running Time: 41:18
Review by Chris Galea 
10/10

It was abundantly clear, when I had reviewed Saor’s debut album back in 2013, that this was not your average run-of-the-mill one-man-band.  Andy Marshall, the driving force behind Saor, is one extremely talented chap who doesn’t seem shackled with any genre expectations. So while it’s awkward to pigeon-hole the music of Saor (actually a major selling point for me), there certainly are clear elements from Black Metal, Folk Metal and Death Metal.

With “Origins”, Mr.Marshall has truly outdone himself. The album’s songwriting is impeccable and the atmosphere is bewitching. There are a lot of folksy elements, such as the guitar melodies in the title-track or chants and the bagpipe sounds in ‘Fallen’, but those elements never steal the limelight. Indeed everything is always done with the compositional aspect of the song as the ultimate beneficiary. And it’s not just the atmosphere that intrigues: the riffs, for example, are both catchy and aggressive. Production-wise, “Origins” is very well balanced too and it’s hard to find fault with anything about this release. 

“Origins” is over in a jiffy and In fact, my only gripe is the album’s brevity. We need more of this great music!

‘Origins’ Official Music Video

TRACKLISTING:
01. Call Of The Carnyx
02. Fallen
03. The Ancient Ones
04. Aurora
05. Beyond The Wall
06. Origins

LINE-UP:
Andy Marshall – songwriter, vocals & all instruments
+
Dylan Watson – session drums
Sophie Marshall – female backing vocals

LINKS:

Disclaimer: This review is solely the property of Chris Galea and Ever Metal. It is strictly forbidden to copy any part of this review, unless you have the strict permission of both parties. Failure to adhere to this will be treated as plagiarism and will be reported to the relevant authorities.

Týr – A Night At The Nordic House

A Night At The Nordic House Album Cover Art

Týr – A Night At The Nordic House
Metal Blade
Release Date: 18/03/22
Running Time: 01:26:29
Review by Simon Black
9/10

Not a band I have ever come across before, but Týr get two firsts from me today by also being the first band from the Faroe Islands that I’ve come across. Whilst lyrically and thematically being all about Norse mythology, Týr have much more of a heart-thumping Folk Metal feel to them than the more outwardly Metal stalwarts of all things Viking like Amon Amarth do. Apart from subject matter, there’s everything to compare between them, so don’t assume that if you are familiar with one, that you know the other. 

This is a good enough place to start with the band though, although what makes this slightly harder to wrap your head around as an introductory record is the fact that this is a live performance with The Symphony Orchestra of the Faroe Islands, so there’s a massive Symphonic Metal style overlay here that might distract you. It actually works really well because unlike many of these sort of collaboration projects the orchestra is not overly dominant in the mix, with the focus remaining with the core four members of the band whilst simultaneously giving you a shortcut to their greatest hits from the eight studio albums that precede this. It’s also been hanging around for a while, having been recorded in early 2020 before the music industry went turned tits up, but with Covid presumably having put plans on ice this seems like a sensible choice for a release. 

Let’s be clear, this is not a slot-filler for the sake of it. These sorts of collaborations have become de rigeur since Metallica did their first “S&M”, but there’s clearly a lot of thought gone into getting the balance right and still making it sound like the band are sticking to their guns. And then let’s not underestimate the deeply Folk feel here, and its effect. There’s a massive cultural disconnect between the concept of orchestral and classical music, with its implied elitism and the middle ages “street” of Folk, which is about as blue collar as you can get without storming the bastille. That’s why I raised my eyebrows when I read about this, but they absolutely pull off the dichotomy – but it’s clear why the orchestration is played lower in the mix than the band are.

This is a band unafraid to use simple unaccompanied vocal harmonies in their native Faroese language from time to time too, which when you throw a choir into the mix as well add a hugely rich and cinematic feel to the proceedings. Check out the insanely epic ‘Ragnars Kvæði’ if you don’t believe me for sheer effect. In fact “epic” is a good word for this whole endeavour, as at eighteen tracks you get plenty of bang for your buck, but with so much variety in tone, pace and style that you don’t get chance to get bored. 

Style wise for every Faroese language Folk piece, you’ve got more Folk Metal-esque fist-pumping English language fare like the anthemic ‘Blood of Heroes’, which is one of those tracks with a singalong chorus for which no previous familiarity is required that mercifully doesn’t get ulled into Power Metal territory. It’s worth noting that the anthemic choruses work just as well even if you don’t speak a word of Faroese, because these guys know how to craft engaging and punchy songs. The band wisely alternate between style and language to keep the pace fresh and to keep the novelty of the special nature of the project, and with a vocalist in Heri Joensen who can alternate between a gruff Metal delivery, high end classically clean and nasally folk as and when it stays crisp and dynamically fresh throughout.

The audience are clearly deeply enjoying themselves and it would be interesting to watch the live DVD that goes with this, as the strength of performance alone here has my curiosity piqued enough to want to know a little more about this act. However this 96 minutes is a cracking introduction to a band who clearly can cut the mustard live, and with some solid enough tunes in their repertoire to warrant further analysis.

‘By The Sword In My Hand’ Live Video

TRACKLISTING:
01. Hel’s Prelude
02. Gates of Hel
03. Grindavísan
04. Sunset Shore
05. Ragnars Kvæði
06. Gavotte from Suite in G Minor
07. Blood of Heroes
08. Ramund Hin Unge
09. Hold the Heathen Hammer High
10. The Lay of Thrym
11. Tróndur í Gøtu
12. Mare of My Night
13. Turið Torkilsdóttir
14. Fire and Flame
15. Torkils Døtur
16. Ormurin Langi
17. By the Sword in My Hand
18. Álvur Kongur

LINE-UP:
Heri Joensen – Vocals / Guitar
Hans Hammer – Guitar
Gunnar Thomsen – Bass / Vocals
Tadeusz Rieckmann – Drums

LINKS:

Disclaimer: This review is solely the property of Simon Black and Ever Metal. It is strictly forbidden to copy any part of this review, unless you have the strict permission of both parties. Failure to adhere to this will be treated as plagiarism and will be reported to the relevant authorities.

Fall Of Stasis – The Chronophagist

The Chronophagist Album Cover Art

Fall Of Stasis – The Chronophagist
Self-Released
Release Date: 25/02/22
Running Time: 49:31
Review by Dark Juan
10/10

Good afternoon. I have exiled myself to the lounge of Dark Juan Terrace as Mrs Dark Juan has taken over the kitchen for the baking of many brownies for our petite enfant terrible. I don’t mean The Dread Lord Igor Egbert Brian Clown-Shoe Cleavage-Hoover, either, much as he might want to be hand fed brownies as he reclines upon his chaise longue, which is covered in the skins of his previous victims. I am mildly aggrieved because I have been made to engage in physical labour (on a Sunday! For shame!) whisking eggs, because the drive shaft to the food processor has magically vanished as soon as it was required. And the company that makes the damned machine would charge a mere £2.99 for a replacement, but don’t have any in stock because they are a colossal bunch of German wankers. Anyway, my plan for today was not to write the bollocks you are now reading, but to in fact bottle 80 pints of beer I have had brewing in the cellar. However, Mrs Dark Juan has taken over the kitchen so it won’t be happening till at least tomorrow as I have to go and babysit later and I’m fucked if I am washing and sterilising 80 beer bottles this evening.

In other news, I went to visit my daughter last week and discovered that she earns significantly more than me at half my age. Make of that what you will, but it appears that wrangling young gentlemen is not the industry I need to be in. Neither is writing entertaining opinion pieces, because I do this free, gratis and for nothing apart from now having one of the most kick ass underground Metal record collections in the world nowadays…

…Which leads us neatly into the reason you’re ploughing through the usual stream of consciousness drivel that prefaces what you have actually come to read about. Today it is Canadian (Montreal-based) Metal pioneers Fall Of Stasis, debut is fizzing angrily away through my headphones. This six-piece list Finntroll, Fleshgod Apocalypse, The Black Dahlia Murder, Unexpect and Ne Obliviscaris as bands whose fans might enjoy their music. I’d agree in the main, especially Fintroll, but there is a major and powerful influence on the music they haven’t mentioned, whose fans would absolutely fucking adore Fall Of Stasis, and that is Cradle Of Filth. Lead vocalist Jessica Dupré’s waspish, wide-eyed scream is very reminiscent of the demented howling of one D. Filth, Esq. and the music reminds this mad bastard of the Vaudeville qualities of Suffolk’s finest Gothic mentalists as well, with the loud / quiet / loud dynamic, Gothic overkill, lush orchestration, classic Metal components and outlandish speed of The Filth all faithfully displayed. 

Where Fall Of Stasis differs from Cradle Of Filth, though, is in the vocals. Although Dupré faithfully can reproduce the range of shrieking of the Tiny Suffolk Terror, the deeper ranges and clean singing are left to guitarist Gabriel Bernier and this is to the benefit of the music, as his rich, deep roar and actual genuine ability at emoting when singing cleanly, complements the howling histrionics of Dupré rather nicely. In fact, the band’s sound is rather more interesting than just a Cradle Of Filth analogue. While there is a major Filth influence, there’s nice little touches of Anathema (mainly from the emotional sound of the clean vocals, and when the band take the foot off the accelerator) and The Blood Divine, as well as the inventiveness of arrangement of The Black Dahlia Murder. 

‘Baron’ is the most Cradle-like track on here, being a full-velocity blast through Black and Death Metal with lush, velvet draped gothic keyboards swirling underneath the music and the vocals closely following the Filth blueprint. ‘Swarm Of Casualties’ introduces a Hardcore chant into the Gothic madness and ‘The Last Waltz’ introduces a carnival-like element during the middle part of the song. This is also where Fall Of Stasis differ from Cradle Of Filth. They write about modern social issues and personal experience, where Dani Filth and Darren White et al would be much more likely to write about the light of the moon, or a fictional vampire, or something equally ethereal. I like both, to be fair.

Although the music is similar to Cradle Of Filth in a big, big way (especially their stuff around ‘Thornography’ and ‘Damnation And A Day’) I find the lyrical component and the arrangements different enough to allow Fall Of Stasis to stand apart and to be judged on merits that have nothing to do with Suffolk’s manglers of Gothic Metal. Now then, I mentioned the “G” word. Regular perusers of the verbose nonsense I write know that Dark Juan is a hide-boundcard carrying Sad Old Goff who was wearing black nail polish before emo’s were even fucking BORN and therefore is generally all over any gothic release on Ever-Metal.com’s release lists like a predatory vampire is after a consumptive, alabaster skinned young girl who shrieks a lot instead of getting the fuck out of Dodge. Quite a lot of the time this is disappointing, because quite a lot of Gothic Metal bands simply don’t have the chops to manage it. Schysma were a notable exception (mainly because they are all bat shit insane), and so are Fall Of Stasis. FOS return speedy Gothic Metal back to being interesting after some time in the doldrums (mainly because only Cradle Of Filth do it well enough to be of interest) and I for one am fucking happy about this. My favourite era of Metal is the early to mid-90’s where Death, Black and Alternative Metal all exploded at once, and Fall Of Stasis exhibit just the kind of sound that floats my black-painted, rusty boat.

However, the production job on the album is also early Cradle of Filth. Remember the sound of “Cruelty And The Beast”? That wispy, cluttered, yet powerless production that seemed to forget that bottom end even existed? Yeah, that. This album would have very much benefitted from a heavier, more bassy sound, as well as a tiny bit more treble. The mid-range is where everything is at and it all becomes a bit muddy at times, normally when the band is at full chat and clarity is lost in favour of clattering. This is only a minor point of order though, because this is a debut album, and it is an astonishingly self-assured one, chock full of gothic splendour, blurred speed and music that will take your eyes out at a hundred metres. The arrangements of the songs are interesting, varied and inventive, the lyrics thought provoking and intelligent and the musicians all absolute masters and mistresses of their craft and once more Dark Juan has been transported to the heavens on frothy purple waves of enthusiasm for yet another new favourite band. It’s still only February and already I have a candidate for the top ten releases of 2022. I love this album that much, and so should you fuckers!!!

The Patented Dark Juan Blood Splat Rating System (Le système breveté d’évaluation des éclaboussures de sang Dark Juan pour mes amis canadiens-français) awards the first 10/10 of 2022 to these Canadian madmen and women for an album that is contemporary yet brings back memories of when Metal was at the height of its powers, and yet slays with as much ease as a tactical nuclear weapon. Also, I fucking love the idea of a time-eater as a concept (a chronophagist, if you will).

I wanted to say a personal thank you to the band for the extremely professional EPK they sent, complete with listening notes for each song, which really enhanced the aural experience of their album. So here it is. Merci, mes amis!

TRACKLISTING:
01. Wilted Forests
02. Fall of Stasis
03. Drunken Howl
04. Baal Arise
05. The Cult
06. Twilight Carnival
07. Baron
08. The Last Waltz 
09. Swarm Of Casualties
10. The Chronophagist (Featuring Viky Boyer)

LINE-UP:
Jessica Dupré – Lead Vocals
Gabriel Bernier – Lead Guitar / Backing Vocals
Tristan Bergeron-Boucher – Rhythm Guitar
Mathieu Groulx – Bass
Sergei Lecours – Drums
Mélissa Bissonnette – Keyboards

LINKS:

Fall Of Stasis Promo Pic

Disclaimer: This review is solely the property of ‘Dark Juan’ and Ever Metal. It is strictly forbidden to copy any part of this review, unless you have the strict permission of both parties. Failure to adhere to this will be treated as plagiarism and will be reported to the relevant authorities.

Bloodywood – Rakshak

Rakshak Album Cover Art

Bloodywood – Rakshak
Self-Released
Release Date: 18/02/22
Running Time:
Review by Beth Jones
9/10

If you’ve not come across Bloodywood yet, then you clearly haven’t been paying attention, damn it!! Everyone needs a bit of their music in their lives and there is no day that can’t be infinitely improved with a quick blast of one of their tunes. For those who haven’t heard them, they are a Folk Metal band from India, who specialise in combining traditional Indian instruments such as the percussive Dhol and the single-stringed Tumbi, with absolutely blistering and hard hitting Modern Metal. And by gum do they do it well.

Their new offering “Rakshak” is centred around a theme of healing, in a variety of forms. The word ‘rakshak’ is Hindi for ‘protector’ or ‘guardian’ and the band state that their goal with this album is to make a positive impact on people’s lives. 

‘Gaddaar’ Kicks off the album. It’s a hellishly catchy number combining familiar Bhangra sounds with some absolutely punishing Metal riffs and violent vocals. It’s one of the most exciting album openers I’ve heard in a while to be honest. It’s impossible not to move to it. There’s a section of Hindi chanting in it too, which flows seamlessly back into the brutal vocals of Jayant Bhadula. He has one hell of a set of pipes! 

There are some great Rap Metal vocal sections through Bloodywood’s music too, provided by Raoul Kerr – and in these areas, their sound becomes almost akin to Linkin Park, but heavier. ‘Aaj’ has a great example of this, as does ‘Zanjeero Se’, which also takes on a very Modern Metal feel through the guitar work, and the overdriven tones. It’s bloody clever stuff.

Another aspect of their music is mournful flute solos, which appear at various points throughout the album. They really shine on ‘Jee Veerey’ and add a haunting depth to this track in particular. It’s like a weird juxtaposition of the intense, in your face Modern Metal sounds and the calming Traditional Folk sounds, which really works outstandingly well. 

And it really is a combination of all these sounds that make up Bloodywood, and this album. Every track is attacked with punch and hi-voltage energy, but delicately interwoven with uplifting Folk. My Favourite track is ‘Dana-Dan’. It’s intricate, with a whole ton of rhythms changes between sections, it’s sonically massive and down-right dirty as. This could be complete carnage at a live show. There would be some serious slamming going on. I LOVE IT!!

Bloodywood are by far one of the most exciting bands around at the moment. They are making more and more of a name for themselves globally, and rightly so, because they’re fresh, and so very passionate about what they do, which is just a great thing to see. This album needs to be a mainstay on your playlists.  

‘Aaj’ Official Video

TRACKLISTING:
01. Gaddaar
02. Aaj
03. Zanjeero Se
04. Machi Bhasad
05. Dana-Dan
06. Jee Veerey
07. Endurant
08. Yaad
09. BSDK.exe
10. Chakh Le

LINE-UP:
Karan Katiyar – Guitar, Flute, Percussion, Composition, Production
Raoul Kerr – Rap Vocals
Jayant Bhadula – Aggressive Vocals

LINKS:

Disclaimer: This review is solely the property of Beth Jones and Ever Metal. It is strictly forbidden to copy any part of this review, unless you have the strict permission of both parties. Failure to adhere to this will be treated as plagiarism and will be reported to the relevant authorities.

Verikalpa – Tunturihauta

Tunturihauta Album Cover Art

Verikalpa – Tunturihauta
Scarlet Records
Release Date: 21/01/2022
Running Time: 47:14
Review by Rory Bentley
7.5/10

There’s a scene in the extended Lord of The Rings where Legolas and Gimli are on the sesh after a victorious battle and they get into a drinking contest in a rowdy tavern environment. The dashing elf comes out on top after necking 20 pints, only feeling a slight tingle in his fingers. His gregarious dwarf wingman survives with a little less dignity and starts going off on one about swimming with hairy women before collapsing from the heroic volume of grog he’s ingested at the end of this bizarre pissing contest. This album is the perfect soundtrack to this situation, and by the end of it I felt as merry and belligerent as our diminutive hero, but without the presumably Balrog-sized hangover.

In 2020 we all did things we never thought we were capable of under the dark clouds of uncertainty and fear that gripped the world, and I was no different. Rather than bake banana bread, or developing a sudden interest in jigsaw puzzles, I decided to eschew all my metallic hardcore credibility and dive straight into the accordion-driven nonsensical void of Folk Metal. It is a bizarre world; it is a flamboyant world, and it is a very silly world. 

I think the thing that appeals to me apart from the fantastic jaunty melodies over scything Nordic blasts is the balance between Black Metal intensity and an infectious sense of fun. Unlike a lot of the more pastoral Black Metal I listen to, there’s a palpable self-awareness from Folk Metal bands that undercuts the brooding pomposity that sometimes sees more ‘evil’ bands coming across as even more ridiculous than their hurdy-gurdy worshipping counterparts. Enter Verikalpa. 

Hailing from the land of a thousand lakes, and almost as many Lordi albums, these self-described ‘Finnish Folk Metal crazy drunken warriors’ leave no ambiguity as to what’s in store for the listener in their refreshingly humorous press release; where they proclaim, ‘Winter is coming, the dead rise to greet it, and damn, they are thirsty!’. But am I thirsty for the folk?

Opening cut ‘Verikauhu’ wastes no time initiating the listener into this raucous winter jamboree, going full tilt with blast beats, tremolo guitars, and the piercing shriek of vocalist Jani Ikonen. As your head is blown back by this metallic onslaught the song segues into jaunty Folk melodies that evoke the might of Finntroll. Catchy, uplifting but still carrying a level of aggression, this sets the template for an exhilarating booze-fuelled dash though the snow like a half-cut Father Christmas. This chaotic momentum is carried forward over similarly fired-up tracks like single, ‘Riitti’, with its accordion-led flourishes, and ‘Raivokansa’ which has an almost dungeon-synth style intro that once again gives way to more high-octane partying.

Thankfully, the band knows just the right time to introduce a change of pace with the stomping waltz of ‘Tunturihauta’, which provides much needed variety at the point where these deranged hoe-downs begin to blend into one another. The slight changes in tempo continue for the rest of the album and are integral to keeping the party going as we get deep into the latter parts of this debauchery. Just before the finale I was starting to flag a little but closing number ‘Talven varjot’ changes the formula with a more grandiose arrangement, dripping with bombast and searing black metal malice. The choral chants and gang vocals, which have thus far been used more sparingly, really bolster the band’s sound and add a more epic, mythical dimension to proceedings to the point where I’d like to see them utilised more on future releases.

At just over 47 minutes I did have a creeping urge to slip away from the revels and retreat to my bed with some ibuprofen and a bottle of Lucozade and the feeling that this could have lost a few tracks to retain maximum impact; however, this is a minor criticism from someone who thinks most records are too long. I also would have liked a little more variety to the keyboard tone as there’s only so much accordion one man can take when it’s so high in the mix, but again this is a rather minor gripe.

Overall, this is an absolute riot of intensely delivered, fun-loving Metal to glug a tankard of ale to, and if you felt the last few Korpiklaani releases were lacking in urgency (I did), or that the last Ensiferum album was a little too heavy on the power metal (I didn’t- I loved it!), then this could be the bonkers wintry tonic you need to soothe those January blues. Just like the lad in the helmet and his orc mate crawling through the snow towards a frothy pint on the cover, I was hankering for a swig and “Tunturihauta” more than quenched my thirst. I don’t even know what the fuck I’m writing anymore.

TRACKLISTING:
01. Verikauhu
02. Kalmoarmeija
03. Riitti
04. Raivokansa
05. Rautanen Herra 
06. Tunturihauta
07. Jotunimmalja
08. Taisto
09. Hurmos
10. Suohon Suotu
11. Talven Varjot

LINE-UP:
Jani Ikonen – vocals
Sami Ikonen – guitar
Jussi Heikkilä – guitar
Sami Knuutinen – bass
Jussi Sauvola – keyboards
Jari Huttunen – drums

LINKS:

Verikalpa Promo Pic

Disclaimer: This review is solely the property of Rory Bentley and Ever Metal. It is strictly forbidden to copy any part of this review, unless you have the strict permission of both parties. Failure to adhere to this will be treated as plagiarism and will be reported to the relevant authorities.

Diaboł Boruta – Żywioły

Żywioły Album Cover Art

Diaboł Boruta – Żywioły
Self-Released
Release date: 17/01/22
Running Time: 49:00
Reviewed by Paul Hutchings
5/10

I have no idea why I selected this album to review. I don’t particularly like Folk Metal. It’s a genre which is too twee for my liking, giving opportunity for seriously fast passages to be played on instruments that should either be in museums or in some farmer’s hut in the Scandinavian countryside. It does however, appeal to me when I’ve had a few beers for then you are much more likely to jump around in typical drinking song style. 

Diabol Boruta are Polish and have been playing for well over a decade. This album is a curious combination of genres, with Folk mixed with Thrash, Death and even Black Metal in some horrific cauldron which has thrown up a concoction which probably spawned two heads and many more digits than necessary. It’s a nightmare combination which is confusing and at times utterly bewildering. 

The music careers all over the place, a runaway tram with no brake option. Dive into the opening song ‘Pielgrzym’, which is pleasing enough with a central keyboard riff adding to the intricate guitar work. The gang style singing isn’t anything special but it’s not offensive in any way. Then there is the craziness of the track called ‘Of Black Fairies’. It’s a slammer of a song to start, full of energy and bounce, before it drifts off into an ethereal segment which confuses and changes direction; then it rips off again with all kinds of instruments dipping in and out. We then get some tribal drumming on the short track ‘Pył’ which throws yet another curved ball into the mix.

If you think that was crazy enough then ‘… z popiołów’ will surely blow the mind. It’s a rampant Death Metal explosion complete with gruff vocals, battering drums and high intensity riffing which is utterly chaotic. It hurts the ears, fries the brain and is another confusing strand in an album I can best describe as schizophrenic. 

From what I understand from the blurb, the lyrics cover Slavic mythology’s descriptions of the four elements, as well as a few other bits and pieces. It’s all very disjointed and having the lyrics in their native tongue, whilst to be applauded, makes one’s interpretation of the songs at least semi-redundant and certainly impossible to follow. 

As the album continues, I did find it hard to maintain concentration despite the jagged interplay and variation in songs. The thrashing fire of ‘Ogień’ was reasonably entertaining although the strained vocals were less impressive. By the time I got the seven-minute scramble of ‘Ziemia (Dreamtime)’, I was bemused, confused and a little bored. The songs don’t linger long in the memory, they are abstract and disjointed and whilst there are flashes of brilliance, most notably in the crafted guitar work and solid drumming, overall this is an album I am never likely to play again. 

TRACKLISTING:
01. W drodze
02. Pielgrzym
03. Prawdziwa historya o Wiedzmaku
04. Of Black Fairies
05. Pył
06. … z popiołów
07. Woda
08. Ogień
09. Powietrze
10. …i znów gęstnieje mgła…
11. Ziemia (Dreamtime)
12. Auha

LINE-UP:
Paweł Leniart – vocal, bass
Konrad Peszek – guitar
Krystian Szamburski – guitar
Lubor Vanek – drums

LINKS:

Grimgotts – Tales, Sagas & Legends

Tales, Sagas & Legends Album Cover Art

Grimgotts – Tales, Sagas & Legends
Stormspell Records
Release Date: 07/05/2021
Running Time: 67:00
Review by Simon Black
7/10

Named after the goblin run fictional bank in the Harry Potter franchise and originally starting off life as a parody act of that story arc, Britain’s Grimgotts have now branched off into their own fantasy world and stories – presumably because cease and desist letters from J.K. Rowling’s brand protection lawyers can have that effect on a band. This third full length album is actually a re-release of the trilogy of EP’s they released gradually over 2020, which have been repackaged and remastered for this release and just so you don’t feel hard done by they have thrown in a re-recording of ‘Fight Against the World’ from their first album, recent single ‘Grimgotts Calling’ and an orchestral extra ‘Lost Chapters’ which helpfully powers through the story arc with a narrated section.

Musically this is an interesting Euro Power and Folk Metal fusion project, although the Power is definitely the predominate voice in the first EP. “Tales” is definitely the weakest part of this composite release, but unfortunately you need to get through it first. The four tracks, although competent have little to differentiate from each other in terms of tone and frankly if you listen to one of the four songs, you have the measure of the four.

Although, obviously written as one arc and remastered, they clearly were not recorded together as the constituent parts do sound so distinctly different and to be honest the sound improves as the arc progresses. As indeed does the writing, playing and pretty much every aspect of the recording as the team hit their stride with this second EP (and again indeed for the final part). The use of some more growling voices in the mix also helps provide some tonal contrasts, as indeed is a general upping of the Folk ante beyond the Alestorm style sea shanty nods on the “Tales” segment, with ‘Plunder, Loot And Chantey’ being the most obvious example, although the instrumental work gets way more technically proficient than you would expect from that corner of the genre. In fact, the guitar work on this segment of the album is an absolute joy, although bizarrely is more restrained elsewhere.

The final “Legends” EP segment seems to effectively fuse and balance the Power / Folk struggle and create a slightly more distinctive and cohesive, if less technical sound. The song structures are a bit cleaner too and less rambling, although overall it’s still missing a stand out lead song for everyone to wave their phone lights to when we all can finally get into a live arena (although the anthemic chorus of ‘Land of Tomorrow’ comes pretty darn close). To be honest this EP is head and shoulders above the other two, as they really seem to have found their stride with this section and the song-writing, performances and use of multiple voices make for a much stronger and more powerful delivery style. They also strike the tonal balance perfectly with these four songs, which are all very different in pace and style from each other and also do a better job of communicating the story arc. To be brutally honest, if the first two segments had been of this calibre, then overall my rating would have been much, much higher.

Of the extra tracks, ‘Fight Against the World’ achieves the one thing the three EP’s don’t quite manage – a distinctive trademark song to pull the punters in, but unfortunately given that it’s been around for a long while I can’t really count it. By the same rule ‘Grimgotts Calling’ can’t be counted either, although it’s definitely got the catchy shanty aspects down pat.

If you can get beyond the relatively weak opening segment this is entertaining and enjoyable stuff, but does lack a clear and distinctive ‘everyman’ track or two to hang your hat on in, although the extras demonstrate that they can write them perfectly well. The “Legends” EP is by far the best of the three, but hearing the arc develop has its strengths as well and overall, this is not a bad release which allows you to see a growth and progression in their work.

“Tales, Sagas & Legends” (Official Full Album)

TRACKLISTING:
01. Fight ‘Till The End
02. For The Power
03. The Dawnbringer
04. Reign Of Might
05. Northern Passage
06. Rise Again
07. Plunder, Loot & Chantey
08. Sagas
09. The Boys Of Boone
10. Land Of Tomorrow
11. The Edge Of The World (To What Lies Beyond)
12. Kinsman
13. Fight Against The World
14. Grimgotts Calling
15. Lost Chapters

LINE-UP:
Andy Barton – Vocals
David Hills – Guitars
Fabio Garau – Keyboards
Nelson Moreira – Bass
Mo Abdelgadir – Drums

LINKS:

Map of Andria
Grimgotts Promo Pic

Disclaimer: This review is solely the property of Simon Black and Ever Metal. It is strictly forbidden to copy any part of this review, unless you have the strict permission of both parties. Failure to adhere to this will be treated as plagiarism and will be reported to the relevant authorities.

EMQ’s with ARGOROK

EMQ’s with ARGOROK

Hi everyone! Welcome to our new EMQ’s interview with Dresden, Germany based Melodic Death/Folk/Groove Metal project Argorok. Huge thanks to Bill for taking part.

What is your name, what do you play, and can you tell us a little bit about the history of the band?

Our band name is Argorok. It’s a project that was in the making for quite a few years, initially starting out as some kind of Folk Metal project, but it died at some point. As I started recording and mixing a few years ago, I took the chance and turned it into a more Death Metal like studio project. You are still able to hear its roots, however.

How did you come up with your band name?

It was the name of a boss from The Legend of Zelda. I thought it was catchy and doesn’t give away too much about what music you actually play and hopefully gets people’s attention and curiosity.

What Country/Region are you from and what is the Metal/Rock scene like there?

I’m from Dresden, Saxony, Germany. We have a few established places, which are also known beyond borders in the scene, like the Skullcrusher Club. The Wave Gothic meeting in Leipzig and the Eastclub are also known places in the scene in Saxony.

What is your latest release? (Album, EP, Single, Video)

“Usurpator” is our first release.

‘Aus der Tiefe’ (Official Lyric Video)

‘Katharsis’ (Official Lyric Video)

Who have been your greatest influences?

Bands from different Genres I liked, like Soulfly, Amon Amarth, Orbit Culture, Subway to Sally or Equilibrium, to name a few.

What first got you into music?

I guess I liked the bands I heard and wanted to do that too, so I started playing Guitar and Bass.

If you could collaborate with a current band or musician who would it be?

Mick Gordon. He is more of a Soundtrack composer, but I absolutely love his work, especially on the new Doom games. (Alternatively, Alestorm, for shits and giggles).

If you could play any festival in the world, which would you choose and why?

The With Full Force festival is one I would like to play at, as it has good variety and brings a bit more attention to the metal scene in the region.

What’s the weirdest gift you have ever received from a fan?

Fans?

Argorok is a new project, which just started, so fingers crossed there will be lot of weird gifts to come.

If you had one message for your fans, what would it be?

Don’t let anyone dictate your music taste. If you like something that’s fine and only your business.

If you could bring one rock star back from the dead, who would it be?

Cliff Burton.

What do you enjoy the most about being a musician? And what do you hate?

The whole creative process, from writing to producing, is awesome.

What I really hate are cheap people, who don’t see the actual effort behind what you do, as it is “just music”.

If you could change one thing about the music industry, what would it be?

Actually requiring talent and not only looks. At least for mainstream genres, that’s not that big of a deal in the metal scene luckily.

Name one of your all-time favourite albums?

Metallica – “Black Album”

What’s best? Vinyl, Cassettes, CD’s or Downloads?

I love collecting CD’s. But I can also see the appeal of vinyl. Nothing beats physical media (and yet here I am, releasing digital only…but some CDs are planned for the future)

What’s the best gig that you have played to date?

It was one with my previous band and years ago. We were basically just a school band and not very good, but we got the chance to play at a really huge stage. Too bad it was the middle of the day and nobody was listening. But we had fun and beer was free!

If you weren’t a musician, what else would you be doing?

Definitely some other form of creative work. Already doing that and took care about things like album cover and video production as well.

Which five people would you invite to a dinner party?

Either friends and family, or some German personalities you probably wouldn’t know 😊

What’s next for the band?

Getting our music out to people and hopefully some exposure and positive feedback. We are also thinking about a handful of shows for next year.

What Social Media/Website links do you use to get your music out to people?

Facebook, Instagram, Youtube, Spotify…the usual ones.
www.facebook.com/argorokmusic/
www.instagram.com/argorok_music/
www.open.spotify.com/artist/6llFWW6qYUSIiCuamqTFjk
www.youtube.com/channel/UCGCfiKQBiXmc-VcaHyQ-nVQ

Jaffa Cakes! Are they a cake or a biscuit?

Guess I’m not British enough to answer that.

(As previous #EMQs have shown, you don’t need to be British to experience the wonders of Jaffa Cakes – Rick)

Disclaimer: This interview is solely the property of Ever Metal. It is strictly forbidden to copy any part of this interview, unless you have the strict permission of said party. Failure to adhere to this will be treated as plagiarism and will be reported to the relevant authorities.

Midgard – Tales Of Kreia

Midgard – Tales Of Kreia
Sliptrick Records
Release Date: 18/08/2020
Running Time: 48:36
Review By Beth Jones
7.5/10

Folk Metal! Some people love it, some might think ‘What the folk was that all about’! Personally, I love it, so am always happy to review a Folk Metal album. And next on my playlist is “Tales Of Kreia” the new release by Ukrainian Folk Metal four-piece, Midgard. Formed in 2015, this is their 3rd studio album, and they have already made a pretty decent name for themselves in the folk metal world, supporting Finnish Folk Metal giants Ensiferum at their Kiev show. This new album is written entirely in a fantasy setting and explores various themes and moods within that world.

The album opens with ‘Necromancer’, which begins in a pretty standard folk metal way, giving you a comfortably familiar feeling. This only lasts for about 20 seconds, though, then the piece is taken over by thrash-esque riffs and rhythms. Unexpected, but pretty damn good, I can tell you. It then moves through a variety of transitions of genre, exploring melody and rhythm changes aplenty! It’s very skilfully done, and a great way to open the album.

Track 2, ‘The Horde’ is introduced by traditional instrumentation, then launches into some damn fine chunky riffs, and again plays a merry dance with variations around themes and genres.

In fact, this is true throughout the album. It’s littered with skilful riffage and rhythms, and explorations in combining traditional folk instruments with the heaviness of the more metal orchestrations. It’s great to bang your head to, but doesn’t become just another jaunty Folk Metal album, as some tend to do.

Another thing to mention is the vocal style of Klym Apalov. In the main, it’s a growl. But it’s a very tuneful growl, which impressed me. We also get the odd clean vocal, too, mainly in the folky sections, which adds a bit of variety.

The track that’s most recognisably Folk Metal is ‘Dworf King’. And for all those…er… young in mind, shall we say, it starts with an interesting sound effect that is bound to have a few of you tittering behind your hand, like naughty schoolboys! This track is very much a ‘grab a flagon of ale and do an over exaggerated stompy walk round in circles dance’ tune. Nothing wrong with that, like, but I’d go for Mead!

The final track ‘Ice Spirit’ begins with spoken word set over music, in the band’s mother tongue. This gives it a kind of ‘final battle pep talk’ feel, and creates an interesting mood. Again, this track explores various rhythmic and melodic themes, closing the album in the same way it began.

I think my favourite track on the album has to be, ‘Velmehazerun Dolian’. It’s hellishly pacey from the start and really sets your toes a-tapping! It’s quite spiky too, if you know what I mean? There’s a ton of gain on the rhythm guitars, and everything is very staccato, which gives it a real edginess. There’s also a stunning lead guitar solo in the middle of it, just before it drops off into a traditional folk interlude, because, well, why not!

Production wise, it’s all pretty tight too. A nice balance of sounds, and you can hear all the little folk twists coming through.

All in all, while it’s not completely ground-breaking, this is a very decent release from Midgard, which does step away from comfort zones a little, and is definitely worth a listen. It’s got a real groove, and there’s something in there for every musical taste, too (especially Thrash). So, even if you’re not usually into Folk Metal, I’d still give it a try.

TRACKLISTING:
01. Necromancer
02. The Horde
03. Velmehazerun Dolian
04. The Ring
05. Dworf King
06. Keeper Of Freedom
07. Reaper
08. Elven Blade
09. The Hunt
10. Black Widow
11. Ice Spirit

LINE-UP:
Klym Apalkov – Vocals
Roman Kuznietsov – Guitars
Alexandr Kudryavtsev – Drums
Maxim Shatilo – Bass

LINKS:

Disclaimer: This review is solely the property of Beth Jones and Ever Metal. It is strictly forbidden to copy any part of this review, unless you have the strict permission of both parties. Failure to adhere to this will be treated as plagiarism and will be reported to the relevant authorities.

Interview with Atorc

Interview with Atorc
by Sheri Bicheno

After witnessing Atorc for the first time at Warhorns Festival in 2018, I’ve noticed these guy stand out more and more. I have previously reviewed their latest album “Under The Raven Banner”, seen them play across the UK at many Folk and Viking Metal themed events and befriended some of the band through mutual people, so I was more than happy to sit down with the Suffolk based tribe and have a chat!

Atorc are one of the UK’s most well-known underground Folk Metal bands and I was intrigued to know a bit more about their story…

Sheri: Hello guys!

Atorc: Hello Sheri!!!

Sheri: I did a review of “Under The Raven Banner” last year for Ever Metal and loved it, For our readers, tell us a bit about the roots of Atorc and how you decided on the concept of the band?

Battlebeast: Well the roots of Atorc really stem from when I got into folk metal and I thought there’s not really a lot of folk metal bands in the UK. I had contact with Tom Scales and we basically formed Atorc together with our old drummer and violinist and basically from there evolved into what we are today!

Boudikath: We had the line-up changes so everyone brought their own influences.

Battlebeast: Yeah, everyone brought in their own influences with what they’ve listened to over the years. With Andy, there are elements of Power Metal in the band, which is very interesting and with Jack, he added a sense of a much darker, black metal vibe with the rhythms. So, it’s been quite interesting with the mixture of music tastes all around.

Boudikath: And also, some classical backgrounds.

Sheri: That brings me onto the next question actually – your sound is quite entangled in metal, folk – most notably in the Viking and Battle elements, with some pretty big Power vocals. You certainly have your own identity – do you have any influences both musically and historically?

*HELBARD THEN ENTERS THE DOMAIN.*

Helbard: Hellooooooooo! There are different people, different backgrounds, different influences. I’m really like a classic metal kinda guy. I’m more sort of Maiden, Priest, Queensrÿche, Dio – that kind of thing. I have done a lot of different music projects before this as well, covering quite a lot of different backgrounds musically. I mean I was mainly a guitarist before I joined this band on vocals. Before that I was a gigging bass player for quite a while in a band playing like Cheap Trick power pop stuff. That was the first album I ever recorded as a bass player. So, I’ve been all over the map really and I’ve written for everything I’ve been involved with as well. So, it’s really trying to kinda be a well-rounded musician and much like Jack is, Jack has done a lot of different stuff as well. Just trying to bring some sensibility from that, you know…you can always learn skills playing any kind of music that you can take with you and transfer to anything else you do.

Sheri: What about you, Kath, you play the keys and you do backing vocals, have you done anything previous?

Boudikath: To be honest this is the first proper band I’ve been in but I did study Popular Music at University along University bands and that kind of thing but I came in completely new to metal, I mean when I first joined the band, the guys made me watch The Headbangers Guide to Metal, which is a documentary – they were like “she needs to know more!” hahaha. To be honest, I was more into Coldplay, David Gray, 80’s Pop so I was thrown in the deep end as it were haha. But I can say now I quite enjoy listening to things like Iron Maiden, Priest and those kinds of bands.

Sheri: What song or performance do you feel best represents Atorc?

Boudikath: To be honest, we’ve got the one that…

Battlebeast: EVERYONE…

*Blistyg laughs*

Boudikath: Yeah everyone likes it.

Battlebeast: And its repetitive all the fucking time haha.

Helbard: Is that not actually Shieldwall though?

Blistyg: Is this the one that begins with “T”? Hahaha.

Helbard: What THE Shieldwall? Hahaha.

Blistyg: We play it at every gig…it’s our Smoke on The Water I think haha. I do still enjoy playing it, sometimes haha.

Boudikath: I do enjoy playing it, it’s just very much, that every time we HAVE to play it.

Blistyg: Watching the crowd while we play it…

Helbard: I think by the time we play that song in a set, we’ve already been going for 30 or 40 minutes and everyone’s on board at that point.

Battlebeast: To be honest, I just wrote a basic folk metal song about drinking and I thought “this isn’t gonna catch on” like it’s just gonna be a throw away song…but everyone loves it.

Blistyg: This is like our Rum song.

Sheri: It’s probably the Mead Hall for me hahaha

Helbard: That’s another drinking song! Haha.

Battlebeast: Fun fact – I’m writing another drinking song for the next album.

Sheri: Oh, you are!? Well I was going to ask you about that anyway! From your first release, which was – EP “Pure Folking Metal”, how do you feel you have developed since then? You’ve had a line-up change since then and have found your fit – take us through the development.

Battlebeast: I think we have. With the first line up we had, it was OK, I wasn’t really happy with how things were going. But when the former singer and violinist drop out, Andy and Kath came in, which I thought was the perfect fit with everything that we had been doing so far – with Andy’s vocals and Kath’s keyboards.

Blistyg: And quite good friends we have become too!

Battlebeast: Yes, we have. Then we had Helen brought in and her Violin skills were amazing for us as well and then when our former drummer left, we brought in Jack and his blend of dark, black metal, y’know, influences of drums – they just perfectly fit.

Blistyg: We’re like the perfect BLT hahaha.

*everyone laughs*

Helbard: I’ll tell you something too, those line-up changes from me and Kath coming into the band to having the line-up we have now, I think that took about maybe two years. We hadn’t changed drummers and taken Helen on board until about the end of 2016.

Boudikath: We joined around the beginning of 2015 then Helen came on board for the Seven Tales when we did the recording and then Jack came in about a year later.

Blistyg: Do you guys remember our first gig with Andy and Kath?

Battlebeast: The Evil Scarecrow gig…

Boudikath: It was Evil Scarecrow, it was amazing. We had only been in the band about a month and a bit!

Battlebeast: Yeah it was! Haha.

Boudikath: Literally, we had been in the band a month and we supported Evil Scarecrow at The Waterfront.

Sheri: So, you were pretty much thrown into the deep end that’s amazing haha!

Boudikath: Yeah haha. We showed up and it was like “Oh by the way guys, your gig next month is at the Waterfront in Norwich.” We were like WHAT?!

Helbard: It wasn’t…Well, It wasn’t really confirmed until about a week before. The promoter was…we had problems trying to get money from him.

Boudikath: I remember the venue being big. In terms of development, we definitely have darker tones to “Under The Raven Banner”. The Seven Tales was fun, but we’ve come a little bit darker since then. I think we might be going down a bit more of a darker route with things to come – keeping some of the fun in there – but in general a bit darker.

Helbard: Another thing is that Seven Tales was pretty much – well the songs were written before Kath and I joined the band.

Boudikath: Yea there were two songs in there I think, that were written after and then we added to some of them.

Helbard: “Under The Raven Banner” is a bit more progressive, it was written sort of mainly by Jack and I did the lyrics and there are a few songs on there that I wrote almost entirely and that is probably a reason why some of them sounds almost completely different to Seven Tales album.

Sheri: It was last April you released Under the Raven Banner and as we’ve just discussed, this album is a lot more raw than “Seven Tales Of Swords And Ale” and you highlight some of the difference in songwriting and the sound. Are there any challenges you faced whilst doing that?

Boudikath: I think it was more Andy’s writing style more than anything. Andy got involved with writing on “Under The Raven Banner” and basically, we come along with a riff, an example is Hammer to Anvil – Andy developed on that. In producing the guitar/violin mix that wasn’t so much written in that first one…

Blistyg: When I’m writing riffs and stuff, I don’t really think much about making a structure so to speak. It’s mainly just riffed and then I rely on everyone else to help fit it all together sort of thing.

Thor: Also, the album is more produced than the EP because we spent more time on it. So, there’s more production involved than on the EP where we kind of didn’t play to a click so there’s more tightness and more cleanness with some spick and spam production with the second one more so than the first.

Helbard: Yeah, the first started on a weekend.

Boudikath: 8 songs in 2 days!!

Sheri: Wow…!

Boudikath: hahaha. So, I dont think we can complain about how it came out haha.

Helbard: If we had done another two days on it, it might have been great! Hahaha. It might have been a classic you know! Haha.

Sheri: Are you working on anything at the moment? Tilly you mentioned that you’re writing for a new album so are you working on anything else whilst we are waiting on 2020 to do one?

Battlebeast: Yeah, I’ve been writing some lyrics so what I’ve done so far, I’ve sent to Andy. So, he will have a look over and see what he can do with them. I mentioned I’m doing another drinking song – cuz why the hell not. I’ve been also researching a lot of other Viking events, you know, the Norse mythology and everything. Basically, everything I can whilst we’ve been in The Great Plague of 2020. Just plodding along trying to get some new material out or make new material and do the best we can.

Boudikath: It very much works lyrically doesn’t it that you do all the research, Tilly… and that goes to Andy so Andy can create lyrics around it.

Battlebeast: Scales (Tom) and I have been working on some riffs as well and we’re basically going with that. Just trying to make new music during these times.

Boudikath: Scales has also got a new toy that he got over lockdown as well! Someone’s got a pretty seven string, haven’t they??

Blistyg: Kath! Shhhhh! Hahaha.

Helbard: We do have a very few rough demo’s knocking about and we’re kind of maybe considering different ways of doing an album this time. Obviously, it’s easier than ever to make music off your own back so to speak. We might see what we can do to do something as no one knows what is going to happen as we get through this. We might see what we can get done off our own back. So I mean, the facility to record at home, me and Scales also have a recording interface so there’s always stuff you can do. It will be a little bit of a learning curve.

Boudikath: It’s not just a drummer and couple of guitarists, its everything and it makes it difficult.

Sheri: You have quite a big UK following where Viking Folk metal genres are concerned, I’ve seen you play multiple times, the first time I remember was at Warhorns 2018 and I could see loads of faces in the crowd donning your trademark blue warpaint. When you have fans and supporters that turn up to live events taking part in your theatrics, what is that like for you?

All: It’s the best thing ever!

Boudikath: Honestly when you get people coming up to you and they’re like “OMG I’ve seen you so many times, please sign this!”

Battlebeast: Yeah when they want your autograph, it’s just like WTF!

Boudikath: HRH Vikings was the best.

Battlebeast: That was one of our top gigs, best thing ever.

Blistyg: We had a good last year. Even though it was really really good, Vikings just topped it off really.

Boudikath: The last gig we did actually was really good as well. The last gig we did was this year in February, where we did a headline show in York. That was a sold-out show in York.

Helbard: OAKENSHIELD.

Boudikath: We want these gigs back. We were meant to do, the gigs we were meant to do Sheri, were the Isle of Wight in July, Power Metal Quest Fest in September…

Battlebeast: And we had other gigs lined up, its just all gone! Just like that. It’s just the waiting now you know – waiting for all this crap to go away.

Boudikath: I mean it will be at least kind of middle of next year, I think…

Sheri: It’s the same here with us at Rabidfest. We are at the end of the year and we are at the stage where we have to hold tight and wait until we know if it’s in the best interests of running the event.

Boudikath: I think the people who held off the longest was Jim Beerman (Beermageddon) and now Badgerfest have also had to sadly postpone.

Sheri: I think we will just have to completely write off 2020, in the case of events.

Blistyg: I think it’s a time where you can learn new skills.

Sheri: Absolutely. We were talking about your writing and your challenges! What are your best memories as a band? I mean you’ve played some pretty cool places and festivals…

Blistyg: Manchester and York are always fun. York is the one that stands out.

Battlebeast: North is always the best to play for me, Manchester and so on… I know Birmingham isn’t technically north but we like playing in Birmingham, Nottingham or Manchester and Sheffield. It just feels better. We just have a larger audience. Whereas if you’re playing local here, you get like… two guys and a dog. Haha!

Boudikath: Down here it’s all Thrash really isn’t it?

Battlebeast: Yeah that’s the thing, it’s either Thrash or Hardcore.

Blistyg: Even though our hometown gig in Bury there were loads of people, there were the most metal heads I’ve ever seen in that place.

Sheri: Each place does seem to have their own majority of audience – y’know. I know that Brighton changes from Extreme Death Metal and now there are a lot more Prog and Hardcore bands around. It’s sometimes harder to get other genres introduced to new places.

Helbard: I just want to say about Manchester – I always feel like we are a little bit cursed when it comes to Manchester because the first time we played there, we overran. I remember having a really hard gig because I didn’t have anything to eat before the gig and had an issue with running out of steam half way through. The second time we played in Manchester, we got heckled because I kept addressing Manchester as Sheffield haha!

Battlebeast: Oh yeah, yeah!!

Helbard: And I’ll tell you why… we were playing Sheffield the next day and that Sheffield gig had been a total nightmare as a plan and everything. So the whole weekend I thought “This Sheffield gig, man, I’m dreading it, it’s gonna be crap.” Like… Sheffield, Sheffield, Sheffield… and I was so pre-occupied with the Sheffield gig that I was dreading that I got on stage in Manchester and I was like “Hello Sheffield!!”

Sheri: OH LORD!

Boudikath: To be fair though, Manchester was a nice crowd in general, I just think everyone was a bit pissed and a bit pissed off that you called it Sheffield haha!

Battlebeast: Third time the charm, Andy.

Helbard: Fun times!

Sheri: Happy days! Hahaha. Viking and Folk metal genres are getting more of a light shone on them these days – in your opinion, do you feel this has been overlooked and why?

Helbard: I think everything comes around doesn’t it?

Boudikath: I think the reach is bigger now.

Battlebeast: The internet has more of a gateway for people to listen to other bands – there’s loads of forums and platforms now.

Blistyg: It’s also to do with how it’s – that theme has now become quite popular you know, with Game of Thrones, Skyrim and so on…

Boudikath: Yeah there’s a lot of branching on gateway kind of stuff that brings people back to this kind of music so…

Sheri: It’s always good to have something new but I wish this all came out earlier or was more accessible to reach as Viking and Folk metal is based on essentially history and mythology, which History teaches us.

Atorc: Absolutely, yeah.

Boudikath: I would like to say as well that I think there aren’t many bands like us in that we have the power metal vocal in the folk element. It’s a lot more than kind of I’d say black metal vocal that goes along with it normally, whereas I don’t know of any other Folk Metal band that has the Power Metal vocals.

Thor: There’s a lot that in the new Ensiferum album though, isn’t there, Tilly?

Battlebeast: Yeah there is but I don’t think – I think they’re trying to catch on to the trend. Because I can see that there’s a lot more other Folk Metal bands doing the Power Metal side of things – not saying we are the cause of that at all!

Boudikath: I’d say though that the Power Metal bands that I’ve seen; it’s always been the female vocal that stood high. Which is what we don’t have. I do the lower vocal and Andy does the higher vocals.

Thor: Which is different to other things.

Sheri: What goes through your minds whilst playing live?

Battlebeast: Nothing…hahaha. When you’re on stage, you’re basically just going for it. You’re just having fun; nothing comes to you.

Sheri: You just live it.

Battlebeast: Absolutely. You just rock out with your…

Boudikath: No Tilly, we don’t do that hahaha.

Sheri: Choose a drinking game to represent Atorc and we will have to play it a festival next year.

Helbard: It’s what I call Drinking The Beer hahaha

Blistyg: We could play Forky Forky.**

Battlebeast: Ahhh Forky Forky!

Blistyg: I wanted to play that at Bloodstock last year, but no one seemed to be playing it.

Helbard: It kind of died off.

Blistyg: Maybe we can do that as a band haha.

(** Forky Forky for those not in the know is a game where the rules are that a metal fork (with four prongs) and a courgette are involved. You must score 1,000 points. The courgette is placed in the middle of a circle of people and the fork is lobbed at the courgette so that it has to stick into the courgette erect to win 1,000 points. Otherwise you can achieve getting 1,000 points if the fork lands in the ground at a more than 45-degree angle. The player that gets the fork erect in the courgette then wins the game and has to take a bite of the courgette.)

Boudikath: Let’s paint the courgette blue!

THUS, ATORCY FORKY WAS BORN!!!

Sheri: That’s a thing now.

Atorc: We will play this at Bloodstock next year haha.

Sheri: Finally, What advise have you got for other people who want to do what you do and be where you are?

Battlebeast: Just don’t give up, if you get knocked down, keep on trying.

Boudikath: Be different.

Helbard: Have an image. I think everyone’s burned out on seeing guys in just black tees and cargo shorts, wearing converse. You know, we are in a good time for bands to be a bit theatrical and try and do something different you know. Put on a show. People want to put on a show.

Dont either be afraid of being ridiculous. If you think it might be a bit ridiculous – most things that people love are things that are a bit ridiculous but done really well.

Sheri: Thank you so much for your time guys, I really appreciate you talking to me.

Atorc: Thank you Sheri, this has been awesome!

Rick Here; With the interview complete Atorc trundled off into the socially distant horizon to search for battles anew! I would like to thank the band and Sheri for a great interview!

To read Sheri’s full review of Atorc’s album “Under The Raven Banner” then hit the following link:

To keep up with everything Atorc related then click the following links:

www.atorcofficial.bandcamp.com/
www.facebook.com/AtorcOfficial/
www.instagram.com/atorcfolkmetal/
www.twitter.com/AtorcFolkMetal
www.open.spotify.com/artist/7JzeHfVuEk5UDEvSLrQRLG
www.youtube.com/channel/UCIxfkWy2qmZ1mpfj2cDHpdg/videos

Disclaimer: This interview is solely the property of Sheri Bicheno and Ever Metal. It is strictly forbidden to copy any part of this interview, unless you have the strict permission of said party. Failure to adhere to this will be treated as plagiarism and will be reported to the relevant authorities.