Rating:
6.8
Elvenking - The Scythe
14 September 2007


01. The Scythe
02. Lost Hill Of Memories
03. Infection
04. Poison Tears
05. A Riddle Of Stars
06. Romance & Wrath
07. The Divided Heart
08. Horns Ablaze [Ltd. edition digipack bonus]
09. Totentanz
10. Death And The Suffering
11. Dominhate
12. The Open Beach [Japanese bonus]
+ The Divided Heart [video] [Ltd. edition digipack bonus]


What's happening to Elvenking? Damn, with their previous release 'The Winter Wake' I was already a bit disappointed in comparison with their two first really good albums but unfortunately, the worst has come now with 'The Scythe'... Things must be said, Elvenking is not a Folk Metal band anymore and only play Power with some few Folk touches... That's sad...

The fact that you add some little violins in the background of your music doesn't mean that you play Folk Metal. If some of you still don't know how this really original Metal can be achieved, you just have to check out Korpiklaani and such bands to understand that Folk doesn't mean Power Metal. The Scythe is an album of basic Power Metal and really I don't understand how Elvenking came to this point. In the past they used to play nice Folk (with Power Metal touches also, that's right) but now, it's just fast rhythm and epic melodic riffs and nothing more. Of course, a few folk elements like the violins are still there but it was a leading instrument in the past, now it's just become some kind of accompaniment and that's really sad... Elvenking probably wants to change or evolve but when they were an original band in the past, it seems nonsensical. This is now just a new combo of Power Metal... And we already have a ton of bands like that...

The Scythe is not a bad album though. The songs are good with a great recording and on more than one occasion the members (especially the singer with his classy voice) are convincing. The medieval ballads like 'Totentanz' are cool but all in all a song like 'The Scythe' is too 'Euro Power' for me... The heavier and more brutal songs like 'Death And The Suffering' are surprising and not bad too but I will say it again I miss the real folk elements! Elvenking should think about it for their future albums, their fans still want Folk stuff in their music and if they can mix it with the music of The Scythe they will be happy!

I'm disappointed by this release and I was expecting something better really. Elvenking is not dead yet but they seriously need to react as soon as possible if they don't want to become a new average and conventional Power Metal band. Let's say that it's just a mistake and let's hope that Elvenking will remember their first musical influences for their future albums.

Performance: 8
Songwriting: 6
Originality: 6
Production: 9


Band profile: Elvenking
Album: The Scythe


 


written by Jeff | 22.10.2007



Comments

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Bararey - 22.10.2007 at 14:53  
OK so overall the album is not bad, it is just your disappointment in this release, not being inline with the first two albums, that led to the 6.8 rating?
schwanderen - 22.10.2007 at 15:16  
Written by Bararey on 22.10.2007 at 14:53

OK so overall the album is not bad, it is just your disappointment in this release, not being inline with the first two albums, that led to the 6.8 rating?


Well the album is only a mediocore release with a few highlights, Death and the suffering and Totendanz as the review states. Considering the ratings of Heathenreel and Wyrd on this site, i think its a fair rating for this album. Dont get me wrong Elvenking is one of my favourite bands (i got a review of Heathenreel on Metalstorm), but this release really disappointed me too... The rousing effect, the originality and the total regards for genres and traditions are GONE with this album and it's theme...
Only one thing to the review, Elvenking has stated that this wont be a folk album, they never really ever stated that they played "folk" as such, it was just a genuine nice touch to their music. And, err, the japanese bonus track is entitled "The Open Branch" not "beach";)
iaberis - 22.10.2007 at 15:19  
Biggest disappointment for me... it seems that they lost their originality feeling and trying to become something else...
Biggest let-down of the year for me...
Snows666 - 22.10.2007 at 17:16  
One of best and fresh albums of 2007 imo. Power metal... wtf?? Have you really listened to it?
Collin - 22.10.2007 at 18:45  
Written by schwanderen on 22.10.2007 at 15:16

And, err, the japanese bonus track is entitled "The Open Branch" not "beach";)


Really? All the information I found about the Japanese bonus tracks for The Scythe say the song is "The Open Beach". I haven't found "The Open Branch" anywhere
Unconsecrated - 22.10.2007 at 19:27  
I agree with the review, i miss the folk elements. Imo it's not a bad album, but i hope that in their next albums introduce more folk elements. I hope that this album is just a "bad phase".
Ernis - 22.10.2007 at 19:39  
I always used to love Elvenking.....their first two releases were grand, especially the one with Kleid as the lead singer, the third album was normal....but now....Elvenking's still among my favourites....but this album is bad....it isn't catastrophic but it's weak compared to their other works....Jeff formulated all the reasons very well...."The Scythe" is unfortunately a letdown indeed...I hope sincerely the band will come up with something better with their next release.....
Iced Dog - 23.10.2007 at 06:15  
Seems a lot of Elvenking fans are disappointed with The Scythe, but I find this to be an absolutely brilliant piece of work, and is my favorite Elvenking release to date. I love the added growls and heavier riffs, while there remains a strong violin presence. The production and guitar tones are also better than on past albums.
Doc Godin - 23.10.2007 at 08:28  
Hm, I can see where your coming from, but since I only own the winter wake im not too familiar with Elvenking (so I have very little expectations to live up to), but it sounds like id really be into this by the description you gave.
Locke - 24.10.2007 at 04:23  
This was the first full album I've heard by them and I really enjoyed it, but if their older stuff is even better than I can't wait to listen to the back catalog.
Astaroth_666 - 25.10.2007 at 07:30  
the only thing good about thisalbum is the album cover:P
Cadaverous Moon - 26.10.2007 at 21:13  
Written by Locke on 24.10.2007 at 04:23

This was the first full album I've heard by them and I really enjoyed it, but if their older stuff is even better than I can't wait to listen to the back catalog.


Their older stuff is really better...Especially Heathenreel,there ain't a single track on it that I don't like...

But the Scythe is pretty good though...It doesn't deserve a 6.8 only....:nono:
Ernis - 26.10.2007 at 21:35  
@Astaroth_666....in fact even the album cover seems cliché here and doesn't suit Elvenking at all.....
oLjud - 13.11.2007 at 11:58  
I just can't stop listning this album! So f**king good!
Okej it's not the most "perfect" album but it's fresh and modern with a very good sound.

Can't say that i like the old albums, there not bad but there just don't get me interested of the music, instead of "the Scythe" very I totaly digg the music!

9/10 rate!
4look4rd - 25.11.2007 at 05:11  
Written by Guest on 25.10.2007 at 07:30

the only thing good about thisalbum is the album cover:P


I actually gave the CD away and kept the cover xD
Sentenced Odiin - 09.12.2007 at 09:13  
unfortunetly the reviewer is very right in my opinion...the good and happy folk elements are missing and these elements are very important in elvenking.waiting for new album with the old style!
Alonso Therion - 13.12.2007 at 21:58  
Well, I'm a great Elvenking's fan and honestly, this one is one their best albums, far better than Wyrd, which is quite annoying if u listen too much....The Scythe has aggressivity and well arranged melodies, n stills has the folk elements, not as much as Heathenreel or Winter Wake, but the basis of their early melodies are still there! Still they are different and original, but they are heavier and that's enough for me....the only thing that bothers me are those electronic stuff, which is a shame for good metal bands to rely on pure industrial crap....hope they don't follow the "pseudo-gothic metal" bands on this road....power metal they were in Wyrd and in Winter Wake, but the real power metal is in Gamma Ray's LOTF 2, their masterpiece!
This is a very good album and I rate it 8,5!!!
Electronic stuff sucks...
JayAreVee - 24.12.2007 at 20:36  
Written by Guest on 13.12.2007 at 21:58


Electronic stuff sucks...


Like electric guitars? (jk)
4look4rd - 20.02.2008 at 19:14  
piece of shit, nothing else can describe it... Just a pile of shitty radio friendly songs
Tanat - 08.03.2008 at 17:24  
I think this album can be reputed like one of the most powerful Melodic Power metal album. I agree thet it losed some Folk elements but it wronge to compare it with previous works of Elvenking. This album has acquired some progressive elements withe energy riffs and unforgettable tune. And now it's a bright thing in metal collection.
Ellrohir - 25.09.2009 at 12:30  
Surely a disaster while you know, what they were capable of before
Uirapuru - 09.12.2009 at 17:51  
To be honest, their folk elements were not their best feature. Power metal always seemed better in their sound, and with just some hints of folk parts this become one of their best efforts.

Not a dissapointment to me, songs without the pretentious complexness of The Winter Wake, a fresher album, catchy because it has to be, and because their music sound better this way.

Great album. One of the best from Elvenking. Just lose to Wyrd.
lord artan - 04.07.2010 at 19:09  
The Divided Heart best song in album
Chris Steele - 10.09.2010 at 20:16  
Great album actually. More power metal than folk, but it is a good album.
MétalNoir - 18.09.2010 at 01:30  
Written by Chris Steele on 10.09.2010 at 20:16

Great album actually. More power metal than folk, but it is a good album.

Agreed. In my opinion their first two were cheesy as fuck and pretty much annoying, particularly because the vocals were horrible. I definitely prefer post- The Winter Wake albums: their last three are great, though very different from each other. Depends on your metallic tastes; extreme metal fans will prefer The Scythe with its melodeath bits while heavy/power metal fans will like old albums better.
The Norseman - 15.10.2010 at 16:30  
Well, an opinion is always an opinion, everyone has the right to one.

Personally, I believe this is a great album, very refreshing and while it made me twitch my nose at first in the end I was loving it.

People usually like to criticize bands for reusing always the same formula. Well, you can't criticize Elvenking for that, they keep reinventing themselves.

Love "Dominhate" btw.

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