Archive for Valkyrian Music

Mørktår release details about new album Dark Years

Posted in News with tags , , , , , , , on 25th April 2014 by Nico Solheim-Davidson

London’s prophets of misanthropy Mørktår have recently revealed the details of their new album Dark Years since is set for release in winter, later this year. The themes surrounding the new album, like previous releases, will deal with misanthropy. The album, which will be the band’s debut album, features new lyricist and vocalist Repktkor and promises to deliver more than Mørktår’s demo releases. The tracklisting is as follows:

I. Happiness No Life
II. No Efficiency In Your Blood
III. Worse Than The Plague
IV. Loneliness Is All You Have
V. Painful Dark Death
VI. Dark Years
VII. Lifekut Misery

Mørktår will also be appearing at this year’s Valkyrian Festival in Bridlington. Weekend and day tickets are available from this location.

Mørktår online:

http://facebook.com/morktarofficial

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Interview with Martijn Westerholt [Delain]

Posted in Interview with tags , , , , , , , , , on 25th April 2014 by Nico Solheim-Davidson

Valkyrian Music editor Nico Davidson catches up with Delain’s founding member and main man Martijn Westerholt in Manchester before the band’s first UK show of 2014 with Within Temptation.

Special thanks to April Mccaffrey for filming the interview.

Delain online:

http://delain.nl
http://facebook.com/delainmusic

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Epica announce one-off UK show as part of European tour

Posted in News with tags , , , , , , , , , , on 23rd April 2014 by Nico Solheim-Davidson

Dutch symphonic metallers Epica are set to embark on the first leg of their European tour in Winter this year, in support of their upcoming album, The Quantum Enigma which is set for release on 5th May 2014. The new album will be released via Nuclear Blast. Frontwoman Simone Simons comments:

After a little break from touring, we can’t wait to be on stage again and perform the new songs along with the old. Europe here we come!

As part of the European tour, the band will be hitting The Forum in London for a one-off UK show this year! Tickets are available from this location. Dagoba are the support act on the European tour.

Epica online:

http://epica.nl
http://facebook.com/EPICA
http://twitter.com/EPICA
http://YouTube.com/EPICA
http://instagram.com/EPICAOFFICIAL

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Sakara premieres new music video

Posted in News with tags , , , , , , on 21st April 2014 by Nico Solheim-Davidson

The Queen of Ravenheart Records, Sakara has unveiled her new music video for the song Weave My Web. Taken from her second, upcoming studio album, the song and video give a glimpse in the musical landscape that awaits the listener during in Beauty And Bravery. The album is set for release around the time of the summer solstice, later this year. The video for Weave My Web can be viewed down below.

Sakara online:

http://ladysakara.com

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A Hero A Fake – The Future Again

Posted in 'Core, Alternative, CD with tags , , , , on 3rd August 2012 by underthenorthernstar

A Hero A Fake
The Future Again
Released July 2012
Post-Hardcore
Victory Records

Allow me to start off by saying that I cannot stand Post-Hardcore. I regard it, along with a multitude of various other Kerrang-cover-adorning subgenres as whiny, mindless, poseur dribble. Listening to such scene bands is about as fun as bathing in napalm and then going for a roll in a lovely salt pit. Regardless, I have listened to A Hero A Fake (missing a semicolon there, lads) on their new album, “The Future Again”, and you get to read my thoughts on the matter. How very lucky.

Well, speaking positively, the production isn’t bad. The instruments are clean-sounding, and everything is well enough mixed. This is probably due to the band being instantly marketable to the hordes of scene kids that follow such music, so the label will have splashed out on a nice studio. And fair play to them, it does sound nice on that front.

But OH MERCY. Breakdowns. Breakdowns everywhere. The default “let’s be all heavy hurrdurr” breakdown makes a stunning appearance on this album. But EVERYWHERE. All is standard, chug chug guitars, China cymbals and quick bursts of double bass… nothing new, whatsoever. It just sounds repetitive, not to mention gob-smackingly unoriginal. What makes it worse is that in places, this is accompanied by the most painful-sounding, horribly generic “shout-along” lyrics… And on that note, I must say, the lyrics in general? Good Lord. It was painful. I’m sure, if this sort of thing is your cup of tea, then they must be very meaningful, but honestly? It just sounds childish to me. Not at all helped by the absolutely pathetic vocals… from what I can hear, they appear to have two vocalists, one of whom does a fairly decent scream, but the other does one of the most pitiful sounding “loud talks”. I can’t call it anything else, because he just sounds like he’s talking loudly the whole time. It’s interesting to note that when all the “Metal” press began to slate Metallica and Lou Reed’s “Lulu”, the same kids who love this music hated it. But the vocal style sounds very very similar, and is based around an Identical idea. It sounds horrific.

The artists themselves are skilled. Yes. They have the ability to play their own instruments, and do so well. But then again, it should be expected of a band to do that. Writing good music is where real talent lies, and I’m afraid there was absolutely nothing here of any particular artistic merit. For example, Quorthon couldn’t really sing, and most of the songs Bathory wrote are not particularly technically complex. But that music was brilliant, and Bathory stand out, because their songwriting was immaculate. A Hero A Fake are EXACTLY the same as every other band of their kind, and will be forgotten by next year, having ridden on the crest of what is currently fashionable, and then drowned in an ocean of mediocrity and terrible songwriting.

I’ve heard nothing today to change my opinion of Post-Hardcore, ad if that’s what you enjoy, then sure, go and spend your money on this. You’ll be delighted, because it’ll sound exactly the same as every other band you listen to, and we wouldn’t want anything different, would we?

Just don’t get annoyed when I spend MY 12 quid on something that won’t make me want to burn out my ears with my own stomach acid.

1/5

Alasdair Dunn of Norderobring

XIII – North Of Nowhere

Posted in CD, Metal with tags , , , , , on 12th July 2012 by Nico Solheim-Davidson

XIII
North Of Nowhere
Due For Release: 21st July
Thrash Metal/Yorkshire Metal
Self-Released

North of Nowhere - Copy

XIII – a number that’s been associated with ill luck and evil since the Code of Hammurabi, which apparently had the 13th law omitted – are a thrash trio hailing from Hull, East Yorkshire. Originally a four piece act, the band parted with one of their guitarists earlier this year and decided to continue as a trio. The rather nihilistically titled North Of Nowhere is the band’s debut album.

The aptly named Triskaidekaphobia (which means a fear of the number thirteen) kick starts the album with a fast paced guitar section before an assault of thrashy goodness blasts through the speakers. The vocals are more on the shouty side of things, though don’t take that to be a bad thing as they suit the fierce use of riffs and drum patterns rather well, especially during the chorus. Speaking of the chorus, the band utilise an adept use of licks between the vocals during the chorus. The solo disappointed me, as I felt it didn’t have that raw, callous feel or sound that I’m used to, having seen XIII perform on more than a few occasions. The radio voiceover that follows towards the end of the track adds a post-apocalyptic essence to the album that skillfully leads into the next part of the album; Breaking Point. I found the song to be not as energetic as the opening song but more aggressive than a bulldog chewing on a wasp (I realise that’s not a pleasant thing to imagine but I assure you, I mean it in a good way).

Retribution is surprisingly a relaxed composition, beginning with a subtle use of cymbals and epic guitar medleys and gentle, caressing vocals before evolving into a punchier piece with harsher vocals and staunch riffs. Like Triskaidekaphobia, Retribution ends with a radio voiceover, only this one carries on into The Longest Day, a song with as much bite as a zombie apocalypse. The vocals and riffs bounce off each other, while there’s a use of more chilled riffs and medleys in other sections of the song, keeping a certain diversity within the sound. Fahrenheit’s introduction sounds rather weak, lacking certain elements to keep the pulse of the music from dying out. The use of radio voice overs during the music makes it feel like some sort of post-apocalyptic or post-nuclear war world while the vocals keep the song modern and the guitars bring about a grim sound.

Down N’ Out takes up a callous, old school thrash sound with dashings of more adventurous stylings and influences whilst the vocals sound rather much like the Beasty Boys, in a strange yet enjoyable way. The Beaten Path has a unique introduction, beginning slow and august-like creating a cold, nihilistic feeling that resonates from the music and vocals. The song is almost sludgey in its style and composition, not that there’s any complaints coming from me on that matter. Unlucky For Some, the bingo calling for the number 13, sounds like an energy drink has been added to the album as the tempo has increased dramatically compared to the song track, as has the level of violence in the music. The solo really stands out on the track, taking on a life of its own whilst staying true to the song.

North Of Nowhere is definitely one of the best tracks on the entire album. The song balances a violent nature with nihilistic embraces and brutal sounds. Eclipse has a unique sound, beginning with the sound of people possibly rioting followed by a hard, thrashing rock influence. The vocals shine through the music, with the music emphasising them, while the music in its own right has its own distinct sound as well. Fuckin’ Scum is one of my favourite tracks by XIII and always keeps me happy when they play it live, so I’ll admit I was more than pleased when I found it on the album. The vocals, like one of the previous songs, take on a Beasty Boys style, only more angry and violent, like a bulldog that’s about to rip off your arms. The riffs range from slow and vicious to faster ad heavier, making it an addictive track to say the least.

When God is Gone… The Devil Takes Hold… is definitely the one track truly void of any hopeful feelings. Despite it’s faux-gentle beginning, the song is an explosion of different musical stylings and lyrics generate the feeling of failing hope whilst avoiding turning into some dodgy emo song. Some of the riffs and vocal sections are very poignant and stay with you long after listening. The album comes to an end with Forever, which is also the 13th track on the album – Nice to see they keep the concept of 13 flowing through. The song itself is different from the rest of the album, making use of soft vocals, piano and guitars as well as a guest appearance by Pastel Jack frontman Neil Bailey, whose vocals accompany XIII’s frontman Dan’s vocals superbly well, like a well trained choir. The track has a chilling embrace to it that is echoed through the piano. Forever ends with the last radio voiceover of the album.

XIII have created a strange but adventurous album in the form of North of Nowhere. Where as I expected to find a purely thrash-only record, I was greeted by different sounds that did much to entice the ears; from Beasty Boys-like vocal work to violent and destructive riffs and drum work. For the most part, the album was more enjoyable than any regular thrash album and I can see a bright future in the world of metal for XIII.

4.7/5

Nico Davidson

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Pantheon of Blood – Consociatio Solis et Lunae

Posted in CD, Metal with tags , , , , , on 19th June 2012 by underthenorthernstar

Pantheon of Blood
Consociatio Solis et Lunae
Released: 13th December 2011
Black Metal
Glorious North Productions

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Pantheon of Blood are a three-piece Black Metal band, originating from Finland. “Consociatio Solis et Lunae” is their second release, after their 2010 demo.

First off, the production on this EP leaves a fair amount to be desired. It doesn’t quite lend itself to the poor quality of early black metal EPs that made them more intense, but nor does it achieve a clarity that would significantly improve it. It’s not TERRIBLE, but a lot seems to be lost in this muddy work, particularly most of the drumwork and any bass.

What instantly strikes me, as soon as “Crimson Empress of the Night” begins, is that they have misjudged their guitar tone for their clean section considerably. It seems like a poor man’s attempt at the bleakness of an early Primordial track, with a distinct lack of the soul or subtle brooding that makes the latter so successful. Once the actual Black Metal begins, it improves. The songwriting for the EP is solid enough, with progressive influences dropping in, a time change here, a tempo shift there. More of it would probably be better. The riffing seems solid, if unimaginative throughout.

I feel that the band has skill, but makes too many ill-informed decisions to be great. Aside from the truly abysmal artwork, the Laughing and clean vocals towards the end of “Crimson Empress…” are probably intended to create a sense of insanity and evil, but they just end up being cringeworthy. The guitar solo going on at the same time as this seems somewhat irrelevant as well. Another significant point is that the B-side, “Overflowing Manifestation”, improves significantly in its latter half. Where its beginning was messy and overcrowded, it ends with what seems to be the aim of the whole EP; an expansive, bleak and engaging mood. The inclusion of much-improved acoustics over the traditional BM-tremolo picking and subtle group vocals it what there needs to be far more of in this band.

Pantheon of Blood end up being just fairly unremarkable with this. I don’t feel particularly drawn in, nor particularly excited by what they’ve showcased. If they continued in the vein of the very end of the EP, I would be far more interested, but as it is it seems they have a long way to go.

1.5/5

Alasdair Dunn of Norderobring