Helcaraxë
Children of Ygg

First off, my apologies to Helcaraxë, for as much as I enjoyed 2012’s Red Dragon, I simply never got around to reviewing it after I purchased it despite really enjoying it as well as all of the band’s prior efforts (2007’s Triumph and Revenge and 2009’s Broadsword). So when Children of Ygg showed up in my mailbox, I was excited to atone with a new Helcaraxë album, but not so fast. Children of Ygg is not a new Helcaraxë album but a compilation that contains unreleased Red Dragon session tracks, a couple of unreleased Triumph and Revenge session tracks, a few new songs, a couple of redone demo tracks and a cover. Still, there is a lot of material here, and it is all done in typical Helcaraxë style; that’s to say loose and rough, but melodic and burly Viking-ish death metal.

Starting with 3 tracks from the Red Dragon recording sessions you get “Sonnenrad”, “Service of Shadows” and “Dismantled”, and though they don’t follow that album’s concept based on JRR Tolkien’s The Hobbit, they fit in sound and delivery wise. Tracks 4-6 deliver 3 new songs, the standout being “Othala” – a real thrashy uptempo number containing the same rough and ready, gruff, loose delivery but with a dash more tightness and polish. “The Return” experiments with a some subtle clean vocals in the chorus that work as well as some almost proggy guitar work. Musically, I still get a Arghoslent vibe from the gruff but melodic guitar work, but the band is definitely developing their own underrated sound.

The seventh track, “Cimmeria” is a unfinished track from the band’s 2008 No God to Save You EP, and tracks 8 and 9 are leftover tracks from Triumph and Revenge. All three being simple, enjoyable Helcaraxë numbers that don’t belie their age or what release they were from. Just riffy, rollicking, jangly earthy death metal, especially the chunky groove of “The Fade”. The cover is a left field one being a cover of Bad Religion‘s “God Song”, an interesting choice and almost unrecognizable due to the vocals.

With the exception of the remaster but still more raw demo tracks “Cross Crusher” and “Deeds of the Master”, all of the tracks, due to their reworked and updated sound blend in stylistically and sound wise, so the release, even the cover does almost come across as a single album, rather than a selection of random tracks, and thusly belongs in your Helcaraxë album collection.

[Visit the band's website]
Written by E. Thomas
October 21st, 2013

Comments

  1. Commented by: vugelnox

    Love this band!


Leave a Reply

Privacy notice: When you submit a comment, your creditentials, message and IP address will be logged. A cookie will also be created on your browser with your chosen name and email, so that you do not need to type them again to post a new comment. Your post and details will also go through an automatic spam check via Akismet's servers and maybe held up for further approval. We purge our logs from your meta-data at frequent intervals.

  • Abhomine - Proselyte Parasite Plague
  • Porta Nigra - Schöpfungswut
  • Abigail WIlliams - Walk Beyond the Dark
  • Suicide Silence - Become the Hunter
  • Annihilator - Ballistic, Sadistic
  • Hell:On/Pripjat - A Glimpse Beyond (Split)
  • Silvertomb - Edge of Existence
  • Necropanther - The Doomed City
  • Lorna Shore - Immortal
  • Ian Blurton Future Now - Signals Through the Flames
  • Voice of Ruin - Acheron
  • Inverted Matter - Detach
  • Marrasmieli - Between Land and Sky
  • Infirmity - Descendants of Sodom
  • Cryptic Brood - Outcome of Obnoxious Science