Rating:
7.8
Kvelertak - Meir
25 March 2013


01. Åpenbaring
02. Spring Fra Livet
03. Trepan
04. Bruane Brenn
05. Evig Vandrar
06. Snilepisk
07. Månelyst
08. Nekrokosmos
09. Undertro
10. Tordenbrak
11. Kvelertak


It's pretty amusing when people try labeling black metal bands/fans as elitist, because these days that stereotype of the genre's bands and followers as striving to maintain that "trve and kvlt" attitude falls pretty easily when one just looks at the facts. In the past decade, black metal seems to have been branching out in all possible directions, incorporating seemingly any potential influences into the core of its traditional formula. Further testament to this increasing evolution comes in the form of Norway's Kvelertak, whose sound can best be described as some strange blackened pop punk of sorts. So as a disclaimer: if you're one of those people that think the aesthetics of black metal all boil down to corpsepaint, howling to the moon in ancient forests, and anti-Christianity, you'll probably want to go elsewhere. Otherwise, if you're someone like me who absolutely loves the ever-increasing creativity of the genre, then please continue.

So yeah, Kvelertak are pretty much exactly what I said: blackened pop punk. What's important to take from that label, though, is the "blackened" part. Meir isn't really a black metal album with punk-ish elements as much as it is a punk album with black metal elements. Kvelertak, of course, could understandably be labeled as either, but their 2013 output leans much more towards the punk side of the equation. Really, the only black metal elements present are the vocals ("Trepan," "Evig Vandrar," etc) and the dirty, lo fi guitar tone, on "Nekrokosmos" and "Trepan" in particular. Other than that, it's a bouncy punk kinda vibe, with the employment of very traditional song structures and catchy rhythms. The main riffs to "Åpenbaring, "Evig Vandrar," and "Månelyst" are sure to keep the listener hooked, and to enhance the punk mood even further, every now and then Kvelertak also throw in some punk vocals into the mix, to great effect (see the opening and closing tracks especially).

Meir, as well as the rest of Kvelertak's music, will most likely disappoint the more orthodox black metal fan, who will probably find it far too accessible and close to mainstream music for their likings. And that's all fine and dandy, but the thing to remember with this album is that it isn't just a blind cry for recognition, as expressed by the band's dabbling into some more commonly accepted music such as punk. Nope, it's more like something of a bizarre experiment, and although Kvelertak's musical formula may not be that original in application (the song structures are, admittedly, pretty basic), the theory behind them definitely is. "Blackened punk metal": I'm not going to make the bold claim that it's never been done before (because I know it has), but Meir definitely puts something of its own spin on the style's delivery. If you're into more off-the-wall black metal, and are looking for some sort of guilty pleasure to play for yourself after your friends that worship Darkthrone and Gorgoroth leave the house, then you'll probably want to give both Meir and the rest of Kvelertak's discography a good look-through. It may make you wind up as a Viking with a fondness for mohawks and The Sex Pistols, but hey: it's a necessary tradeoff.

Performance: 8
Songwriting: 8
Originality: 7
Production: 8


Band profile: Kvelertak
Album: Meir


 



Written on 29.03.2013 by
Apothecary
Your friend the witch doctor.
More reviews by Apothecary ››



Comments

‹‹ Back to the Reviews
Comments: 18  
Users visited: 341  
Search this topic:  


moe5512 - 29.03.2013 at 22:56  
"blackened pop punk"... I like to call them Black Hardcore n' Roll .. But I think you concentrated this review by pointing out why Kvelertak is different from the typical black metal band instead of actually reviewing the album
Apothecary - 29.03.2013 at 23:05  
Written by moe5512 on 29.03.2013 at 22:56

"blackened pop punk"... I like to call them Black Hardcore n' Roll .. But I think you concentrated this review by pointing out why Kvelertak is different from the typical black metal band instead of actually reviewing the album

Well I kinda felt it didn't really need to be stated explicitly: the album is pretty much exactly what I describe the music as in the review. And I actually backed up the descriptive qualities of the music, as I always do in my reviews, with track examples on the album. I'm never going to do a track-by-track review of an album, it's just not at all my style and I believe you're not really supposed to on here anyway. My reviews are usually just a comprehensive overview of the music on the album in question, sometimes made in comparison to the band's previous outputs or the outputs of other bands within the same style. In situations where I'm listening to the band for the first time (and I actually hadn't heard of Kvelertak before checking out Meir the other day), I usually just stick my review to describing the band, and how their overall style relates to the album as a whole. Maybe that's why you say that?
M C Vice - 30.03.2013 at 05:48  
About the last part of the review: would you recommend this to a Sex Pistols fan? Or a Gallhammer fan (the black/punk mix)?
Dinruth - 30.03.2013 at 10:04  
"then you'll probably want to give both Meir and the rest of Kvelertak's discography a good look-through"

uuhm dude .. you know that the rest of Kvelertak's discography only consists of their eponymous debut album?

Besides that, good review .. it seems that I appreciate Meir more than you do, but I can definitely see your points of argument
Ace Frawley - 30.03.2013 at 11:19  
And the album cover looks like something from Baroness.
Ozman - 30.03.2013 at 11:49  
Written by Ace Frawley on 30.03.2013 at 11:19

And the album cover looks like something from Baroness.



I don't want to come across as rude, but "well duh"
what would you expect with the artist of the cover being Baizly, guess what band he plays in andd also does all the artwork for? And tbh the guy is more or less a one trick pony when it comes to his artwork.
Mr. Doctor - 30.03.2013 at 15:35  
Written by Ozman on 30.03.2013 at 11:49
And tbh the guy is more or less a one trick pony when it comes to his artwork.


After a couple of years of seeing his works... Yeah. I have to agree that it got boring for me. Naked chicks with animals... over and over again.
Apothecary - 30.03.2013 at 15:42  
Written by M C Vice on 30.03.2013 at 05:48

About the last part of the review: would you recommend this to a Sex Pistols fan? Or a Gallhammer fan (the black/punk mix)?

Lol that reference didn't really mean anything, I just needed a random punk band to mention for that joke and they were the first that popped into my head. But if you really wanna know, I'd say The Sex Pistols, because Kvelertak (like I said) blend in clean punk vocals every now and then. Which isn't the case with Gallhammer, at least from what I've heard of their material thus far.
Apothecary - 30.03.2013 at 15:45  
Written by Dinruth on 30.03.2013 at 10:04

"then you'll probably want to give both Meir and the rest of Kvelertak's discography a good look-through"

uuhm dude .. you know that the rest of Kvelertak's discography only consists of their eponymous debut album?

Well, there's the West Coast Holocaust demo too, but yeah I know lol. Guess I should've just said "and their debut album" or something.
Boxcar Willy - 30.03.2013 at 16:09  
If you can't spot a Baizley artwork, I feel bad for you.
Ozman - 30.03.2013 at 16:22  
Written by Boxcar Willy on 30.03.2013 at 16:09

If you can't spot a Baizley artwork, I feel bad for you.



yeah, same here. I am baffled at the amount of times people act all surprised that the artwork looks like Baroness artwork when in fact it has Baizley written all over it. Stevie Wonder and Ray Charles can even spot it's a Baizley from miles away.
Dane Train - 30.03.2013 at 21:18  
I saw this album cover floating around Facebook the other week. I couldn't decide if it was interesting or silly. Still not sure.
Unhealer - 30.03.2013 at 21:55  
Come on... the guy didn't recognize a Baizley artwork, ok. Why get so mad about it? It's true he's a one trick pony and it's pretty obvious, but take it easy.

Regarding the album, it's damn fun. Probably on the same quality level than the debut, but listening to it makes me want to party even more. I also love how the bass and drums are mixed, too bad guitars sound weird at times.
Nosurper - 31.03.2013 at 02:01  
Hard to believe I've never heard of this band until now. Liked what I heard. Just purchased the self titled. Not sure if this one is worth it yet.
Mattybu - 31.03.2013 at 02:20  
Written by Ozman on 30.03.2013 at 16:22

Ray Charles can even spot it's a Baizley from miles away.


Yeah, I hear Ray Charles likes to occasionally rise from his grave an acquaint himself with sludge metal and blackened pop punk album covers...
Ace Frawley - 31.03.2013 at 11:41  
Written by Ozman on 30.03.2013 at 11:49

I don't want to come across as rude, but "well duh"
what would you expect with the artist of the cover being Baizly, guess what band he plays in andd also does all the artwork for? And tbh the guy is more or less a one trick pony when it comes to his artwork.


You do come across as rude but I forgive you - it's your unique style. Seriously though, I suspected it was the same artist but couldn't be frigged investigating further to see if it really was - instead just made the general comment.
Godless Visions - 01.04.2013 at 00:09  
Reviewed the new Kvelertak on last week's show. It's a PERFECT metal album. http://metalstorm.net/pub/article.php?article_id=1307
mbcameron - 29.12.2013 at 01:14  
This album made me fall in love with these guys. Besides metal punk is probably my favorite genre. Though I personally would say just blackened punk with some classic rock guitar flair rather than "Blackened Pop Punk." That is just because I think pop punk is pretty much a dirty word. Other than that though it was a good review, even if it seems I liked the album more than you, ha ha.

Advertise on Metal Storm


Login or register to post here.



Similar topics

Forum Topic Similarity Started
News Kvelertak - New Video Online 3 12.05.2011 by Paradox0
Reviews The Flight Of Sleipnir - Saga 3 25.02.2013 by Chainer
Reviews Yurei - Night Vision 3 08.01.2013 by
Reviews Random - Pidanoma 3 19.03.2014 by bleak
Reviews Seidr - Ginnungagap 3 10.12.2013 by Rodney



Hits total: 4518 | This month: 88