Tag Archives: terji skibenæs

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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“Eric The Red” by Tyr

Artist: Tyr
Title: “Eric The Red”
Label: Napalm Records
Release Date: 4/25/2006
Genre: Viking Metal/Melodic
Rating: 8/10

“Eric The Red” by Tyr was originally released in 2003, and surprisingly enough the world at large would be unaware of what this band offered until Napalm Records signed them and re-issued the album. It’s a treat for Metal fans that lean a little more toward the Folk Metal sound but this band in particular is labeled as being “Viking Metal”. Yes, another musical genre has surfaced on us but it is truly in accordance to what you will hear on the release. The band hails from the Faroe Islands located outside of Norway and as a result the music shows a strong ethnic influence. As a matter of fact a good part of the album is sung in their native Faroese. Like most people I was new to the sounds that Tyr offered but I have to say that I really enjoyed the album more than I did not. There is a great level of musicianship displayed across the release and the songs are primarily foot stomping, fist raising rockers. Those who are enjoying the offerings of bands like Korpiklaani and Falkenbach will best be served by paying a little more attention to Tyr. These bands are also Napalm Records artists. Since Tyr is a Viking Metal band they are best enjoyed with horns filled to the top with ale or perhaps a highly raised sword. There is a lot of cool riffs here which make the records very interesting from statrt to finish. However there is a sad aspect in being a band like this especially if you become a fan and are located in the US. There is such a limited ability to tour on ones own and a band like Tyr needs to get on a solid bill with established heavies. Maybe Arch Enemy or perhaps Hypocrisy can do something; each one is interesting in their own right and would prove for a great and dynamic show. It’s either that or be brought over with a couple of similar bands and tour as some sort of package deal. You readers can probably make something like this happen if you send enough emails to the proper record company tour press folks or websites.
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