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A fresh wave of brutality from the masters of Norse Metal
on 29 January 2010
Amon Amarth ( named after Mount Doom from Tolkien's Lord of the Rings books ) a Melodic Death Metal at heart which uses Viking imagery and themes for their inspiration and lyrics. Therefore, they are classed as Viking Death Metal for obvious reasons. This is their sixth full length album ( not including the original EP ) and possibly their best to date.
The band uses the afformentioned viking imagery to a spectacular effect, illistrating the likes of battle, pilliging and being on a stormy sea voyage. Just take note of some lyrics from "Gods of War Arise" for a shining example: "hear the tortured screams/ shattering the air/ they awake from soothing dreams/ into their worst nightmare/ fire sweeps their homes/ they feel the dragons breath/ agonizing death" Epic stuff.
Amon Amarth have always infused their tracks with both boatloads of agression and thunderous melody. "With Oden On Our Side" is possibly the bands most melodic work, especially with tracks like "Under the Northern Star" and the superb "Runes to my Memory". When most metal bands try to do aggression, they usually end up sounding like a bunch of hormonal teenagers who are angry at their parents. However, the theme of vikings comes inheritly with a ton of power, wrath and sheer brutality. Amon Amarth's melodic aggression gives each track an epic sweeping feel. Listen to the chorus of "Runes to my Memory", the latter half of the epic "Hermod's Ride to Hel" of the chorus of "Under the Northern Star" - we feel like we're there in the fierce winter with the "dark skies above us" and "biting frost in the air".
This album is probably the bands best, with all new classics that hold their own against the mighty "Victorious March" from "Once Sent From The Golden Hall" ( also an awesome album by the way ). It's also a good album to listen to when you're at the gym: you'll be pumped with adrenaline and energy in no time.
All in all, a truly epic album from a truly epic band. Buy it.
Highlights: Runes to my Memory, Hermod's Ride to Hell, Cry of the Black Birds, Under the Northern Star
Lowlights: Valhalla Awaits Me ( not a bad song at all, it just pales in comparison with the rest of the album )