Tag Archives: battle metal

Turisas’ “Battle Metal” Rousing Combat For A Decade (2004-2014)

Artist: Turisas
Title: “Battle Metal” Rousing Combat For A Decade (2004-2014)
Label: Century Media Records
Release Date: 7/26/2004
Genre: Battle Metal

“Onnea!!!” I’m just taking a moment to raise a glass and the horns for the debut album “Battle Metal” by Finland’s Turisas which was released on this day ten years ago. Of course perhaps it would be better to raise ones sword and shield when you consider the type of music that this particular band delivers. Congratulations to “Battle Metal” for rousing glorious combat for the battalions of fans around the world for a solid decade now. Truth be told the debut album escaped me and it would not be until 2008 when I first got a proper exposure to Turisas who were performing on the very first “Paganfest” tour of America with Ensiferum, Tyr and Eluveitie. The album the band was touring at this time was “The Varangian Way” so I had to go back a little bit after seeing that performance and I was glad I did since I loved what was being presented on the release. Looking back on the album itself I found the greatest appreciation in tracks like the title number along with “The Land Of Hope And Glory”, “One More” and since I used to play drums a lot I felt the driving force of “Among Ancestors” was fantastic. There is also a lot of serious violin work on “Sahti-Waari” and it’s this kind of thing that keeps Turisas music apart from the general pack. If you’ve not yet heard this album I should point out that a lot of the songs are sung by several voices at the same time. You feel as though you are sitting in a grand hall of victorious warriors who are singing about the epic battles that they are now toasting to. Great stuff. You readers can tell me your own favorites in the comments for this post if you like.
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Ensiferum @ B.B. King Blues Club (5/22/2008)

Logo - Ensiferum

Artist: Ensiferum
Venue: B.B. King Blues Club (New York, NY)
Opener: Tyr, Eluveitie, Turisas
Date: 5/22/2008
Label: Century Media Records

Raise your swords in preparation for glorious battle New York City for the Pagan Fest has arrived and brought with them the might of Ensiferum and Turisas along with their combat ready heralds Tyr and Eluveitie. I have to admit that the Viking and Folk Metal genre were pretty new in my list of favorite styles to follow and that I have only been enjoying these kinds of bands for a handful of years but in this short time I have tried to catch up. The styles appeal to me based on their ability to deliver a consistently rousing and glorious battle sound that is as entertaining on the albums as it comes across in the live sense. This would be the first Paganfest to occur in the States to my knowledge and while something much more common outside of this region it was a very special event on this side of the ocean based on the debut. Despite the show being scheduled at the same time as Dream Theater’s “Progressive Nation” tour with Opeth, the event at B.B. King Blues Club and Grill would be sold out and the hordes of invading Metal fans were lined up early down 42nd street to ensure that they would not miss out on any of the exciting bands performing tonight. I would miss the DT/Opeth show based on its selling out as well but in truth I was much more excited about having the chance to enjoy four bands that have never performed here before. Each of the four bands tonight come to us via different record labels and as result we would get Napalm Records, Nuclear Blast Records, Century Media Records and Candlelight Music all displaying their finest artisans in the genre. If you were lucky enough to be a part of this then you already know how much fun it was and if you missed it for some unknown reason well here is how the event transpired.
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“Victory Songs” by Ensiferum

Artist: Ensiferum
Title: “Victory Songs”
Label: Candlelight Records
Release Date: 4/24/2007
Genre: Viking Metal
Rating: 4/5

I’m beginning to think that there’s nothing better than a little Viking Metal when you are looking for music to get the blood pumping and the energy level raised. This belief was affirmed when I began to play the album “Victory Songs”, the US debut by Finland’s own Ensiferum. As the album begins you immediately hear that Ensiferum approaches the Viking Metal genre with a slightly different twist and this is perhaps based on the band being Finnish as opposed to being Norwegians. They blend many elements of Finnish Folk Metal into the Viking side and as result have some similarity to bands like Korpiklaani and Finntroll. Of course they don’t sound exactly like them since Korpiklaani is quite festive and vibrant and brings dancing to mine while Finntroll makes you want to pillage a town and maybe even drink quite a bit. With “Victory Songs”, Ensiferum are presenting you with a call to arms and as the album opens with “Ad Victoriam” , I felt as though I was riding a proud stallion up a mountain with armies behind me until we overlooked a region that was to be ours for the taking. The orchestrations end and the band attack commences with as “Blood Is The Price Of Glory” which is a thunderous number where you can really envision a terrible battle taking place as it plays through. It is right then that you realize this is going to be an exciting album. There is straight ahead Metal found on “Deathbringer From The Sky” with its crushing guitar riffs and bombastic double bass drumming and with the song “Ahti” the guys sound quite a lot like Children Of Bodom based on the structure used in the tune and in the way that singer Petri Lindroos is handling the vocal lines. The band is also comprised of founder Markus Toivonen (guitar), Sami Hinkka (bass), Meiju Enho (keyboards) and Janne Parviainen (drums). The keyboards on the album however were the work of Finntroll’s own “Trollhorn” Henri Sorvali who uses his vast talents to bring different worlds of sound to the release. The guys also make strong use of the traditional Finnish Folk instruments such as the kantele, bagpipe, nyckelharpa and bodhrans which really help to make this album sound all the more interesting.
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