Ensiferum - Ensiferum review
02. Hero In A Dream
03. Token Of Time
04. Guardians Of Fate
05. Old Man (Väinämöinen)
06. Little Dreamer (Väinämöinen Part II)
09. Treacherous Gods
10. Eternal Wait
11. Battle Song
12. Goblins' Dance
My first experience with growls started by chance when I was searching amazon for new metal and I discovered the genre of viking metal. This immediately caught my attention and I read several bands with special interest the reviews on Ensiferum, which obviously had some good debut album released in 2001. Then I searched other sources for this band because amazon did not have it available so I got me a copy via eBay. Of a three cd order this was the first one I listened to and I was shocked, because yet I had not come across growls that have a quite aggressive impact on the ear when you hear them for the first time, but the winds from the north a blowing fortunately strong, below I will tell you why:
Viking metal is a kind of melodic death with typical melodies from the northern european countries from former times. In Ensiferum I discovered the only imaginable incarnation of that. Soon I found out that compared to clean vocals, growls have a certain strength that cannot be achieved with clean ones. Combined with beatiful melodies, furiously fast drumming, great keyboard musical background, choirs and clean vocals, acoustic parts, well just anything you can imagine, not to forget the northern folkish influence Ensiferum let the cold icy winds from Finland blow out of the speakers of your stereo! On their debut they have managed to play so many good songs that do themselves rock a strong 10 on the richter scale of metal. 'Hero In A Dream' is a great example of this, 'Windrider' my personal favourite, 'Treacherous Gods', 'Eternal Wait' and 'Battle Song' all match this category, but the performance on the other of the 12 songs is not less remarkable. Only song number twelve 'Goblins Dance' falls behind. The latter is musically and lyrically the most aggressive and least melodic, thus not comparable to the other eleven quasi-masterpieces on a masterpiece.
All in all the albums features are great songs, with great melodies, technically brilliant and in uncomparable composition (the only similar song I know is Crimson Rain from Einherjer), thus refreshing the listener from the usual suspects of metal. After Esiferum I rarely found songs out of the extreme genre that I really enjoyed.
With 'Goblins Dance' forcing down the rating and few other songs that I cannot give a full ten this album deseves a strong 9.0 and everything out of this genre that meets my ears has to be measured with comparison to this fantastic milestone in my personal history of musical experiences. I can hardly wait for the successor any more.
|2001 was just about to become history when I received this cd in the mail. It was three days before 2002 and I found myself on an airplane home to spend the New Year. The plane had just taxied off the runway as I placed Ensiferum's debut self-titled album in my cd player. I had not heard much about this young Finnish band before I had ordered the CD but was told, since I like Moonsorrow and Finntroll, I would eat this cd up for breakfast lunch and dinner. Well, I am still eating it and it sounds better every fucking time.
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