“Nattfodd” by Finntroll

Artist: Finntroll
Title: “Nattfodd”
Label: Century Media Records
Release Date: 4/20/2004
Genre: Pagan Folk Metal
Rating: 7/10

According to legend and the official Finntroll website the band was formed when two drunk members began jamming on some guitar riffs and traditional Finnish folk music. The mix of Dark Metal chords along with Hummpa music gave us the end result of FINNTROLL. I have to say that when I sat down to review something referred to as Pagan Folk Metal that I was not quite sure of what to expect. I also have to stress that I did not expect to like this CD in the least. Yet instead of tossing the music aside in disgust I found myself asking Friends if they had ever heard of such a thing and if not I quickly allowed them a listen. It is indeed quite unique and has a large appeal for those that find the influence of traditional ethnic music placed with slamming drums and guitars. On “Nattfodd” (which is translated into English as “Nightborn”) we get a sonically pleasing set of tracks that use the ethnic influences to excellence. The lineup of Wilska (vocals), Routa (guitar), Skrymer (guitar), Tundra (bass), B. Dominator (drims) and Trollhorn (keyboards) certainly ends up delivering some of the most interesting Metal I have heard in a long time. As I listened I was not sure if I was at some nightmare Folk concert or a crazy Metal performance as the piece crosses the line between the two very well. When you listen you will wonder if you should be queued to raise your drink up high or put it down to go slam in the Mosh pit. It is great when a band can bring about feelings like this as far too many groups are taking the safe route these days by churning out similar albums time and time again. The Metal buyer is fickle and needs to be impressed and convinced more than they used to be if they are to spend the cash.

Tracks that stood out for me most were “Trollhammaren” and “Nattfodd” as they totally use the keyboard to some unique styles. Wilska’s voice is holding down the typical Black Metal style, and given the singing on this release is apparently Swedish, you really will not be able to follow him unless you speak Swedish. Ordinarily I felt that I would not be able to appreciate a CD under these conditions but I did and found repeat listens to a lot of the tracks despite the language barrier. The Polka influence makes of a lot of these tracks bounce and have an added energy that makes this Metal journey something that you will long remember after you hear it. The band comes to us on Century Media Records which proves that this label is not afraid to defy the standards in what type of Metal comes from them. I highly recommend this release for it was fun, interesting and very heavy. There is a Progressive edge in the way they mix Genres that never seemed mixable and in that we should applaud them.

Track Listing:
1. Vindfard/Manniskopestren
2. Eliytres
3. Fiskarens Fiende
4. Trollhammaren
5. Nattfodd
6. Ursvamp
7. Marknadsvisan
8. Det Iskalla Trollblod
9. Grottans Barn
10. Routas Vaggvisa

Official Web site: http://www.finntroll-music.com/

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