Mareridt: Myrkur

Rating: 90%

Myrkur,_Mareridt_Album_CoverDuring the later half of 2017, Myrkur released her second record “Mareridt”, meaning “nightmare” in Danish. I remember when her first album came out and how metalheads bashed her being more or less a Pop star, which she was. But, I really enjoyed her first album and saw a lot of potential for the crossover success.

Musically, there’s a lot of things going on that makes this album very exciting. I really like the Folk Metal elements she has used along with some of the experimental styles such as Goth that makes this album fall more or less into Ambient Metal style. Several of the songs seem to be built around a heavier Atmospheric sound. I really enjoy the mid tempo and melodic rhythms. I think when you combine everything, it gives her style of Heavy Metal, texture.

As far as the instrumentation, I like the usage of crushing guitar riffs one minute and then the blast of drum beats the next. This really helps to break up the pace of the music. The piano work on “Crown” along with the eerie fiddle work is amazing. Her vocals are very strong from her clean to her harsh. Lyrically, this is a concept album about her nightmares that occurred during sleep paralysis.

Track listing:

1. “Mareridt” 3:24
2. “Måneblôt” 3:33
3. “The Serpent” 4:04
4. “Crown” 4:56
5. “Elleskudt” 4:22
6. “De tre piker” 3:12
7. “Funeral” (Featuring Chelsea Wolfe) 3:00
8. “Ulvinde” 4:24
9. “Gladiatrix” 2:51
10. “Kætteren” 2:11
11. “Børnehjem” 2:22

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M: Myrkur

Rating: 80%

Myrkur_M_cover.jpgSo, I heard all of this smack about this woman who is a well known Pop star that turned Black Metal. I was like huh? Then I heard how the Heavy Metal community was all up in arms that this woman couldn’t do Black Metal and instantly, everyone began trashing her music. So, I decided to take a listen. Well, I wasn’t disappointed, that’s for sure.

Musically, this album contains a lot. Many influences and elements here from classical to folk and yes, classic Black Metal. It’s all thrown together. This album contains a little bit of everything, plus more. Plus, and this is a major plus, she plays everything. She is a one woman band. And talented she is.

The music is very rich and full when you throw in all of the elements of Black Metal, Folk, and yes Pop. Some of the chorus lines are very full. But as broad as this is, somehow Amalie Bruun pulls this off and brings it home. There’s a nice collection of melodies mixed with harsh and clean vocals.  I love the riffs of the guitar all the way down to the folk instruments. With all of the influences, Amalie somehow balances the music out to compliment the overall sound. There’s also some atmospheric pieces which is where the classical or folk comes in. The song structures are pretty good and yet VERY dark.

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So, where are the complaints and controversy? I think, this woman pretty much pulled it off and made an album that isn’t perfect, but an album that damn good. She does have one hell of a good voice and song writer. I think that this album is very underrated.

Track listing:

1. “Skøgen skulle dø” (The whore had to die) 5:17
2. “Hævnen” (The revenge) 3:23
3. “Onde børn” (Evil kids) 4:09
4. “Vølvens spådom” (Prophecy of the Völva) 1:37
5. “Jeg er guden, i er tjenerne” (I am God, you are the servants) 4:03
6. “Nordlys” (Northern light) 2:15
7. “Mordet” (The murder) 3:41
8. “Byssan lull” (Swedish lullaby best known version by Evert Taube) 2:38
9. “Dybt i skoven” (Deep in the forrest) 3:09
10. “Skaði” (Skadi) 4:29
11. “Norn” 2:17

Ragnarok: Runaljod

Rating: 90%

Runaljod_-_Ragnarok.jpgSo, as many may know or not know, I am a huge fan of Viking and Folk Metal. After buying the acoustical album by Fintroll, I realized how traditional this neofolk music is. It’s deeply rooted in the old Nordic faith, folklore, and tradition.

The vocals are amazing. They’re huge, rich, and soothing. Even the chanting is the same way. This is the type of traditional music that has meaning and purpose. It really does speak to me. There is a mixture of male with some added female vocal work to it. Both, compliment each other and isn’t overwhelming.

Musically, the drums and other traditional instruments are very noticeable. The drum beats give this music a huge sound, while the other instruments compliment the overall sound, style, and feel. The horn is absolutely breath taking when you hear it mixed in with the tempo of the drum.

So, if you’re looking into a type of music to relax to after a very stressful day at work, this works well for me. It does lighten the mood.

Track listing:

1. “Tyr” Týr 6:30
2. “UruR” Urus 10:11
3. “Isa” Ice 7:13
4. “MannaR – Drivande” Man – Pushed 4:09
5. “MannaR – Liv” Man – Life 5:13
6. “Raido” Ride 4:46
7. “Pertho” / (Rune’s meaning still unknown) 2:18
8. “Odal” Patrimony 5:29
9. “Wunjo” Joy 5:20
10. “Runaljod” Runes reading 7:36

Black Aria II: Glenn Danzig

Rating: 60%

Glenn_Danzig_-_Black_Aria_II.jpgIn 2006, I was excited to hear the release of Black Aria II. After purchasing the CD, and listening to it, I was disappointed. The music itself, is a tad bit boring in some places as it didn’t hold my attention. But not all is lost as there are some decent pieces within the tracks themselves. Again, melody is lacking. It is worth listening to around Halloween, but I rather listen to it’s previous record, Black Aria from 1992.

Track listing:

“Overture: Winged Night Demon” – 1:21
“Abbandonment / Recreation” – 4:12
“Zemaragad” – 3:57
“Lamia” – 4:14
“Bridal Ceremony of the Lilitu” – 2:16
“Dance of the Succubi” – 2:21
“Unclean Sephira” – 3:46
“LCKR” – 1:43
“The Succubus Feeds” – 2:20
“Shiddin” – 2:37
“Demons Reprise” – 3:13
“Lamenta Lilith” – 2:36