Thundra
Blood of Your Soul

Thundra, according to their record label, plays “pure black viking metal.” This Norwegian band plays a more brutal, less melodic form than most viking metal bands. While many bands are going more folk, less metal, Thundra is staying true to what I consider viking metal.

When I think viking metal I think Enslaved and Einherjer. Thundra has former members of both bands in its line-up but sounds like neither/ both or Arcturus, depending on the moment. The band, when asked to describe their style, call it simply “good music.” They successfully combine blastbeat-driven black with keyboard accentuated doom and add some subtle folk influences as well.

The main strength of Blood Of Your Soul is the vocals, specifically the broad range of vocal delivery. The dominant vocals are the clean vocals of Steven, which have a distinctive style that fit the folk feel of the music. He also does growl vocals which compliment his soaring clean style and helps keep the intensity level high. There are also black metal style screamed vocals provided by Thor Erik. All songs incorporate diverse styles effectively.

Some highlights are “Frozen Ground,” a nine and one half minute epic with Candlemass-style guitars. “Blood Of Your Soul,” with its prominent melodic keyboards, combines growled and shouted vocals to great effect and stretches its doomy atmosphere to nearly nine minutes. “With Power and Might,” clocking it at eight minutes, is the most diverse, blastbeats and shrieked vocals successfully mixed with soaring clean vocals and slow melodic guitars, though the choir vocals are a bit tedious. The most memorable song on the album is “Raevenrealm.” It is fast paced, melodic, drum dominated, with spoken/chanted vocals and it really sticks in your memory.

This is a highly recommended album.

[Visit the band's website]
Written by Grimulfr
March 18th, 2000

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