Helheim
Kaoskult

Viking black metal giants that seem to be too often overlooked, Helheim are back with their sixth full length and second on Dark Essence. I have followed Helheim to Muspell and back, or from “Muspilli Strid” to “Svart Seid.” Hellheim lineage shines through. This is a return to Solistitium form. Many old elements are in use again, though not as in your face with blastbeats and the shrieks are not as harsh, the overall style is there. Of course there are still heavy and intense passages. Two on a row, they are back. Back in Norwegian with the lyrics as well.

If you gave up on the band because of Terrorveldet and have not yet come back into the fold do so and pick up The Journeys and Experiences of Death along the way. If you lost track of the band during the very long wait for Helsviti hopefully you have been reacquainted, if not now is the time. Helheim releases have always been hard to find, with the band stuck on small labels and the switch to Ars Metalli made for a difficult time getting discs, so now that the band has proper distribution they are making up for lost time. Those new to the band with the label change to Dark Essence, which was easier to find than the Solistitium Records and Ars Metalli and Massacre releases will not be disappointed, and there is definitely something for older fans as well.

Back in 2006 The Journeys and the Experiences of Death was a magnificent return to prominence for the band and therefore my expectations for a sequel were quite high once again. Enter 2008 and Kaoskult, can it possibly measure up? When thinking of Helheim what comes to mind first, “Galder” or “En Forgangen Tid”? One thing that stands out is that the immense amount of creative energy expended on The Journeys and the Experiences of Death has stayed with the band, the creative process spilling over nicely to Kaoskult.

The first song, “Det Norrøne Alter” would fit in well as one of the Journeys, a moody atmospheric sorrowful epic with the characteristic diversity of vocals. Next is the more rapid fire headbanging “Northern Forces.” The rest of the songs fall into the mix somewhere in between to varying degrees. The use of chorus effect goes al the way back to “Jormundgand” and bringing it back here is much appreciated. “Helheim 6” surpasses “Helheim 5” and continues the interlude tradition quite majestically. Mostly this is music that requires your full attention to absorb and not only is it deserving of this attention, it grabs it whether you wish it or not. You will not find your mind wandering during this disc, or if it does you will back up the disc to hear what you missed and curse yourself for being distracted.

If that is not enough to get your curiosity, Helheim did the release show for Kaoskult in a kindergarten. The kids were introduced to several stories from Norse Mythology by Odin himself (greatly impersonated by Rolf Royce of Hellhikers who did guest vocals for the event). Helheim have a genuine wish to spread the knowledge of Norse Mythology, and there is no better place to start than with the young children. “To us it seemed like a great way to launch Kaoskult by doing something that would teach the new generation about their Norse heritage,” according to Hrymr, “We need to let Metal and Odin catch the kids before Jesus does!” Check it out at here or here.

This album is well worth your hard earned money and even more worth your time. Just for the Hel of it, I’ll name some favorite songs. “Om Smerte og Liv”, “Om Tilblivelsen Av Gapende Tomhet”, “Åndevind”.

[Visit the band's website]
Written by Grimulfr
August 4th, 2008

Comments

  1. Commented by: jason collins

    Hails Just noticed another kaoskult at least your not a rip of goth faggot. I have been kaoskult for over 13 years. And the fucken fags from the usa must die.


  2. Commented by: Erik Thomas

    I saw this usde yesterday- it was on Century MEdia records- yay or nay?


  3. Commented by: Grimulfr

    definite yay


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