Headbang or GTFO

Man, have you ever just wanted some truly aggressive Nordic folk metal? I mean the kind that doesn’t really have tribal atmosphere or melodic death metal focus but just axe swinging riff oriented heaviness? Well look no further as the gang from Latvia called Varang Nord gives us the ultra headbanging album called “Fire of the North”. A ripping metal montage of Vikings on the hunt, ale being consumed, Gods being hailed and blood spilled on the snow. Varang Nord brings the heavy with a slight touch of folk metal, just enough to appeal to those looking for new folk metal but not enough to drive those away who just want pissed off Viking metal.
Varang Nord provide us with some of the richest sounding metal of the year (seriously that bass tone and level couldn’t be more perfect with the drums and guitars) while giving us that folkish feeling with the use of accordian. If you heard of last years Grimner album, Fire of the North is pretty close to how those guys sound except Varang Nord focuses more on song structure and riff writing. The bass and guitar riffs are just grand and each song has me headbanging. A very “kick you in the ass” style of metal, this can be fun to listen to while gaming too. So pour some drinks, ready the dice and crank up “Fire of the North”! You’re in for a great night!
I also want to point out that this band has no drummer. I couldn’t find who tracked these or if they are programmed. That is a good thing though because these drums sound great, even if they are programmed. It doesn’t take away from the experience at all, the percussion leads the way to war with Sokolov and Popov’s sword swinging riffs right behind it. Backing up the bass work with rock solid wall of sound is Kuritsyn, whose bass finesse is unavoidable. Tucked neatly in the background but still heard strong is Kalnish on the accordion, whose skills on said instrument adds the layer of genuine folkishness to Fire of the North. Without her, the band is just incredibly aggresive viking death metal. Not that I am complaining about that at all.
Varang Nord gave me something I can enjoy, get fully into and it’s something I want to add to my collection. Please make a physical release soon! Fire of the North is quality metal! This is like firing up a big block Chevy and hauling ass down the highway, the adrenaline Varang Nord gets pumping is massive. A roaring good album that is packed with riffs and full on grooving drum beats.

Thomas Mergel (Headbang or GTFO)


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