Recipe for Viking metal: A dash of black metal, heavy metal and a huge helping of folk with all the lore one can handle. Falkenbach are back with another album entitled Tiurida and to be honest it’s no different than their other releases — besides a few touches here and there.

The album opens with a horn blowing and some fire crackling as thunder strikes. Had me instantly thinking of Viking warriors leaving a battle where they just destroyed a temple full of monks. Very cinematic and serves as a great intro before the first actual song. “…Where His Ravens Fly” is a fantastic all clean sung danceable track and an epic way to start the album. The clean sung vocals had me thinking of the band Tyr, which in my opinion isn’t a bad thing. Keeping a steady staccato based beat and almost march like rhythm, the song eventually closes with finely picked classical (mandolin?) guitar.

The next song “Time Between Dog And Wolf” starts with harmonized choir-esque vocals until the demonic rasps make their way into the playing field. Keeping the same mid-paced feel the song adds some classic black metal riffage that brings Burzum to mind.

A river’s stream is present in the beginning of the instrumental track “Tanfana”, signaling the nature aspect found in most albums of this kind. The song itself has a pretty-ish flute melody that dances around the mid-paced drums. That changes around the three minute mark as the flute takes on a haunting yet beautiful sound as soft synths emerge in the background. The mandolin eventually adds itself to the mix and the song continues with the intro melody until the end. A little long for an instrumental but it held its purpose rather well.

The last three tracks have the band continuing with the mid-paced jams. From harmonic choruses and layered clean vocals to finger plucked melodies and Burzum-esque riffs. It seems as if the band is running out of ideas as most of these tracks follow a similar path. It would have been nice to see more flute brought out on some these tracks and the pace could have quickened up a bit as the whole album is a little slow and does get a little boring towards the end.

If the band can work towards bringing in a more diverse sound and adding some more instruments to their art then they will in fact have mastered their craft. It is what it is – a strong Viking metal album; they just need to focus and take a little more time in piecing together their music.

[Visit the band's website]
Written by Jesse Wolf
December 28th, 2010


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