Moonsorrow – Jumalten aika

So I was going to be all mega contrarian and call this garbage and overrated and all that good stuff. I’ve never liked Moonsorrow. At their best they’re bland and forgettable, and at their worst they’re corny and overblown. I feel like on this album there is a lack of content, in that there’s lots of bombastic and loud atmosphere, but little progression or anything that doesn’t just feel generically large. Everyone is calling this epic but you can’t be epic if you never go anywhere. An epic in the traditional sense is a long story, so logically to be epic you have to have some sort of journey, or at least a sense of progression. That is not what’s on this album, opting to just go for what sounds as massive as possible, in order to overwhelm the listener into thinking the music is epic, when it’s really just completely unimaginative. And in the end I would probably give it somewhere in the 4 range, just to be an asshole. But if I’m being totally honest, I can’t help but think at least part of this record IS epic. It’s epic in a way that I don’t like, but it is epic, and I can’t help but feel a sense of awe at times. The first three tracks I feel don’t add anything, but Mimisbrunn and Ihmisen Aika are fantastic, even if I really don’t want them to be. Sure they’re just trying to be as huge as possible, but they absolutely fucking succeed in that goal. I can’t say this is my favorite record of the year, but I will say it’s not garbage like I was trying to argue it was initially.


Galar – De gjenlevende ALBUM REVIEW

This is honestly a pretty confusing album. On the one hand, it tries to be a very typical melo black album that doesn’t really push the boundaries that much. On the other hand, it tries to support that with orchestral viking metal. Inherently nothing is confusing about this combination. The confusion happens when you try to analyze if they do this well or not. This is a very repetitive album, in that not only is almost every song in the same key, but there seems to really only be one theme throughout the entire album. The main melodies and chord progressions sound very pop-alt metal at times, with their use of suspended chords before the resolution, which to me doesn’t fit with what the aesthetic of this kind of music is supposed to be. On the other hand, while I typically hate it when bands try to go for supposedly epic and beautiful orchestral sections (because typically they don’t accomplish either of those things), there are some genuinely great sections on this album, especially on the fourth and fifth tracks (ESPECIALLY on the fifth track). So I guess the main conflict here is the disparity between the occasionally fantastic orchestral sections with the honestly mediocre everything else. There’s always a danger in melodic anything that it’s going to sound cheesy, and this album doesn’t avoid that. In the end, I honestly think getting rid of all the black metal influences altogether would’ve benefited this album a lot, because it really only drags it down with the expectations of one aesthetic and the deliverance of something else. Straight up viking metal would’ve been much more beneficial in this case.