Kvaen - The Funeral Pyre review




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Reviewer:
8.0

104 users:
8.19
Band: Kvaen
Album: The Funeral Pyre
Release date: February 2020


01. Revenge By Fire
02. Yee Naaldlooshii
03. The Funeral Pyre
04. Septem Peccata Mortalia
05. The Wolves Throne
06. As We Serve The Masters Plan
07. Bestial Winter
08. Hymn To Kvenland


Blashyrkh is so nineties, welcome to Kvenland.

Jakob Björnfot (Autumn: Death, ex-The Duskfall) is the multi-instrumentalist behind this one-man band and on Kvaen's debut full-length he is joined by some very talented guest musicians, particularly drummers, since Jakob plays everything on here but the drums. The Funeral Pyre blends Swedish melodic black metal with second-wave Norwegian black metal and '80s thrash/speed metal, but Kvaen is really its own blizzard beast playing music that brings the glaciers, the darkness, and the fog of the Nordic lands inside your living room.

I first listened to the album a little over a month ago, following a recommendation of the fellow Metalstormer that lives at the northernmost corner of Europe, and I was impressed with it as a whole from the beginning. However, it took me a while to actually spin the whole album and I sincerely have no idea how many times (more than a dozen and I am not exaggerating) I put "Revenge By Fire" on repeat before deciding to move on to the other tracks. In my humble opinion, this song is absolute perfection as far as melodic black metal goes; it has an opening riff that sounds as if a swarm of wild African bees have invaded the Scandinavian woods and it becomes even more memorable when you later hear it with tremolo picking, it features a melody that portrays all the emotional and physical isolation of the northern winter, and then it breaks into a pure thrash attack, first with groove and later with blast, before coming full circle with the aforementioned melodic hook.

Moving on to the rest of the album, you realise that by the end of the second track, "Yee Naaldlooshii", you have heard the word 'fire' more times than you can count with both of your hands' fingers. Not in vain though, because this piece of music does breathe fire across a frostbitten landscape, with ferocious howls cutting through the northern darkness, thundering drums emulating the chest beating of winter demons, and surging riffs spawned in icy dungeons, paired with blazing leads that soar high over snow-covered realms. Most of the songs storm their way in, with "The Wolves Throne" being the exception that offers a few minutes of slowing down. Ingenious moments such as the outro solo of the title track, the thrash pummeling and the neoclassical solo in the middle of "Septem Peccata Mortalia" or the galloping epicness also in the middle of "As We Serve The Masters Plan" are only a few of the hooks that this album is full of.

The instrumental closer, "Hymn To Kvenland", gives a sense of fulfilment, as if you have reached the kingdom in the north after a wild ride through white landscapes, and you can actually picture Jakob Björnfot soloing away in the distance, under the aurora borealis.

The Funeral Pyre is the raging fire that eternally burns at the foot of mountains whose peaks are shaped by winter storms, and it is where all the blackened hearts go to die.

"Here in the dead cold lies no peace
No fire will melt the ice you breathe"


 



Written on 12.04.2020 by Only way to feel the noise is when it's good and loud!


Comments

Comments: 12   Visited by: 91 users
12.04.2020 - 10:05
RaduP
CertifiedHipster
A meloblack album with "Pyre" in its name? Please tell me that at least they don't rhyme it with "Fire".
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Young Woman: That's an interesting problem. Yeah, I struggle with that.
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12.04.2020 - 10:16
nikarg
Mod
Written by RaduP on 12.04.2020 at 10:05

A meloblack album with "Pyre" in its name? Please tell me that at least they don't rhyme it with "Fire".

Actually they don't
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12.04.2020 - 13:02
Bad English
Tage Westerlund
Darkness my old friend always comes early, and winter frost always stays to long. As charon sings, The dark is longer than we thought, so cold.

Many dont Believe but we have snow and it will Come maybe 30cm new snow today, hehe, its difernt place, and metal helps us survive in long period of winter. We do not see sun 2 months hehe.
Its good debute, classic old school mix between eucharist, gates of ishtar, disesction, old dark t. And many other bands, it good. Band might tour as well. ..

Umeå galaxen as other band did, anyway in 90 all cas colder
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I better die, because I never will learn speek english, so I choose dieing
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12.04.2020 - 15:14
MetalManic
Yeah, that Revenge by Fire is a killer track. It randomly came on a spotify playlist and my 4 year old son made me add it to his personal playlist before I even had the chance to realized it's greatness.
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MetalManic
www.MetalManic.com
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12.04.2020 - 16:43
nikarg
Mod
Written by MetalManic on 12.04.2020 at 15:14

Yeah, that Revenge by Fire is a killer track. It randomly came on a spotify playlist and my 4 year old son made me add it to his personal playlist before I even had the chance to realized it's greatness.

Parenting done right.
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12.04.2020 - 16:46
JoHn DoE
Written by nikarg on 12.04.2020 at 10:16

Written by RaduP on 12.04.2020 at 10:05

A meloblack album with "Pyre" in its name? Please tell me that at least they don't rhyme it with "Fire".

Actually they don't


probably "higher" and "desire".
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I thought the two primary purposes for the internet were cat memes and overreactions.
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12.04.2020 - 16:54
nikarg
Mod
Written by JoHn DoE on 12.04.2020 at 16:46

probably "higher" and "desire".

Luckily, this album is very good which means it has almost nothing in common with The Heretics.
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26.04.2020 - 19:43
metalbrat
I should admit that I had the same experience of the reviewer. I was spinning the 1st track a lot of times before I started the balance. I felt like witnessing a heavy and thunderous rain in a cold and dark night... The drums were...Wow.
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In the beginning I was made of clay. Then I bit the apple and they changed me to metal 🤘
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06.05.2020 - 00:04
chomskeet
Written by MetalManic on 12.04.2020 at 15:14

Yeah, that Revenge by Fire is a killer track. It randomly came on a spotify playlist and my 4 year old son made me add it to his personal playlist before I even had the chance to realized it's greatness.


After I shit out my first kid I'm coming to you for parenting advice
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08.05.2020 - 00:07
beyondtehdarksun
Great, now Revenge by Fire hit me the same way after a couple of listens, and I can't stop repeating it. This album should be avoided if you plan to listen to anything else the next couple of weeks

For some reason, Cryptic Wintermoon comes to my mind, which introduced me to Meloblack two decades ago.
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"We are blind to the world within us, waiting to be born"
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10.05.2020 - 23:45
Magere Tijn
Written by beyondtehdarksun on 08.05.2020 at 00:07

For some reason, Cryptic Wintermoon comes to my mind, which introduced me to Meloblack two decades ago.

Oh yeah, I 'member... I still have a couple of one minute teaser mp3 files from their albums, but since all the record shops I knew back then had no way of getting the actual CD's themselves. I just might google them, check if the big interwebs can help me out.
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27.05.2020 - 06:46
tintinb
Revenge of Fire is definitely a killer opener. Other tracks like 'the funeral pyre' and 'the wolves throne' also play with that central riff. That make it sound even better. This album is definitely my AOTY.

It may be just me but I also got the tiniest taste of black and roll here in this album.
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