Some big news from Iceland, and a ton of other rocking new releases to look forward to.
2014’s Með vættum is a personal favourite of your editor’s so we’re very excited to hear that the follow-up Vögguvísur Yggdrasils is due out on September 30th. The Icelandic six-piece will explore the Nine Worlds, from the fiery Muspellsheim to frozen Nifelheim – all held together by world tree Yggdrasil.
The album will be available in the usual formats as well as a special 6-page digibook special release… which features several cover tracks including Alestorm’s “Drink”. This track will be also be made available on a limited edition 7″ single, the B-side of which will be the band’s own “Kvaðning”… being covered by Alestorm! Chris Bowes commented on the flip-flop cover versions:
Ahoy! When we found out that our friends in Skálmöld had recorded a cover of an Alestorm song, of course we couldn’t pass up the opportunity to return the insult! Ever since we first toured with those crazy guys on the Heidenfest Tour back in 2011, Kvaðning has been our favorite song of theirs, so it was the natural choice. Unfortunately, the lyrics to the song are in some made-up language they call “Icelandic”, which is an utterly impenetrable dialect for a monolingual ignoramus such as I…but thankfully, with the power of Google Translate and a dash of perseverance, anything is possible! We hope y’all enjoy the track!
Track list for Vögguvísur Yggdrasils:
LTD Edition Bonus CD track listing:
10. Drink (Alestorm Cover)
11. Inní mér syngur vitleysingur (Sigur Rós Cover)
12. Nattfödd (Finntroll Cover)
13. Lazer Eyes (Thor Cover)
14. Helreið afa
15. Upprisa (Live)
16. Hefnd (Live)
17. Dauði (Live)
Sick of bands releasing EPs with three, four or five tracks on? Well how about a single track that runs the entire length of the EP? Australian progressive/atmospheric black metal act Somnium Nox have done just that, with the release of 16+minute long song “Apocrypha” making up the entirety of the similarly-titled EP.
You can check it out on their bandcamp page and buy a copy if the darkened mood takes you.
Studio album number nine has been announced by Finnish melodic metal quintet Sonata Arctica, two years since previous effort Pariah’s Child was released. The Ninth Hour will see the light of day on October 7th.
Once again, the album was produced by Sonata Arctica themselves and mixed by Pasi Kauppinen, to create a typical yet refreshing sound that defines the spirit of the band in the year 2016. Singer Tony Kakko explains the album art:
The artwork of our ninth studio album The Ninth Hour depicts a future utopian landscape. Nature and human technologies are balanced. In the middle we have an hour glass contraption with a knob for us to meddle with. The right-hand side cup represents the nature side with no humans left, on the left we have the human dystopia after we have destroyed nature. The idea I had was, that turning the knob will tilt the hour glass in one direction or another, and the other cup will slowly empty and that future will be erased. Biblically we are expected to repent and sacrifice on ‘The Ninth Hour’…to dive right back to a more mundane reality, it’s a fact that we are currently living in critical, historical times. Our decisions will define the future. Not only ours as a race, but the future of this entire planet. We need to make sacrifices and in many cases we will repent our already made choices.
Because the first three bands all have names beginning with “S”, I didn’t want to break the pattern.
Experimental synth quartet S u r v i v e’s sophomore full-length and Relapse debut is a dark, sweeping exercise in analog synth mastery. The pulsating, 9-song instrumental release showcases immense diversity between tracks – RR7349‘s compositions range from grim tom-tom thunder to space-age epics, pairing tense plodding grooves with meditative ambience and driving, rhythmic beats. Inspired by IDM and horror scores alike, RR7349 is simultaneously ominous and hopeful; tense and relaxed; percussive and melodic. Additionally, two of the group’s members also recently scored the soundtrack for the hit new sci-fi / horror show Stranger Things on Netflix. RR7349 is a unique addition to the Relapse discography, and unquestionably S u r v i v e’s best work to date.