Thursday, January 15, 2009

Eljudner - Blod og Kvad EP (2008)

The worst part about Blod og Kvad is that it's only two songs, about 9 minutes worth. But what you get here is incredible...raw Norse black metal with a folkish edge.

"Sjelen Stevner" alone is worth the price of admission, a driving mid-paced tune with an epic atmosphere. The guitars remind me of a rawer, vintage Borknagar, I can literally feel the cold waters of the fjords running beneath my fingertips as I hear this. It's scintillating and gorgeous, with those layered male chorus vocals on top of Vanir's calculated snarl. But you've also got the fucking incredible "Andveget", which plods along at a sure fire, slow pace with one of the best raw black metal riffs of its sort I have heard lately. It also picks up in a few spots for some very sorrow-filled, epic blasting and an amazing riff near the end.

This is a rather raw mix but it suits the music beautifully, I don't want to picture it any other way. The bass is only barely audible (in fact I'm not sure if it's just my imagination) but the music does not suffer for this. The drums thunder and the guitars are fascinating. Eljudner has yet to release a full-length album, and it's a crying shame because this is quite excellent. A full length of this caliber would instantly catapult this band to my list of Norse faves. Although I usually don't grade short playing releases highly (especially 7" EPs like this one), I have no choice but to dispense the honors with this.

Verdict: Epic Win [9/10]

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