Bloodaxe
Raping The Ancient

From Thunder Bay Ontario hails a new Canadian Viking squad. Raping the Ancient is the second full length release of black viking noise. Pure violence no melodies no rowdy drinking hymns. Just smash you in the head battle music. I was looking forward to hearing this disc because I have heard good things about their debut album. I say they, but I think it is really a one man band with session members. All the songs are exactly the same in pace and drumming and if you are not paying close attention it is one 32 minute punishing song. It would be easy to say inspired by Sweden’s In Battle since Bloodaxe’s first demo was called In Battle, but the only real similarity is the lyrical content and the speed, though In Battle played faster.

This is a disc aimed at true fans of black metal, not casual metal fans that own a Burzum and a Mayhem shirt but can’t tell the two bands apart. I have heard many albums from many bands that play for the sheer pleasure of torturing listeners, and most lack any sense of structure. Bloodaxe, on the surface, is one of these bands with, aside from the intensity, the redeeming value coming in the form of some good riffs here and there and the occasional passage that screams for the rewind button. The guitar is really buried and is overly simplistic, neither of which is necessarily a problem, and the differences from song to song are very subtle. The lyrics are full of Odin, wolves and ravens, nothing unexpected but reasonably well written, and apologies are given to the Havamal.

Only two songs really impressed me enough to single out here. “Thirteen Oars of Misfortune” is musically more diverse but not monumentally so. “While You Lie Bleeding”, aside from the distracting weird vocal effect on the spoken lines, deserves mention as well but it does drag on a bit too long. The instrumental “Loki’s Fury” has easily the best drumming on the album and some memorable riffs, otherwise the album is basically interchangeable songs. I give Nordavinden Lien credit for what he has produced and look forward to his next offering. Better than most but not among the best, yet.

[Visit the band's website]
Written by Grimulfr
November 17th, 2004

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