“Third Age Of The Sun” by Battlelore

Artist: Battlelore
Title: “Third Age Of The Sun”
Label: Napalm Records
Release Date: 8/30/2005
Genre: Folk Metal
Rating: 8/10

Napalm Records succeeds again in bringing you a very interesting band. Battlelore is an officially sanctioned group that performs in costume and settings based on the writings of author J.R.R. Tolkien and when you see their photos it’s like looking at a promotional poster for “The Lord Of The Rings”. It’s a unique premise to say the least and when you listen to the whole piece you will find it’s a very appealing mix of Traditional & Black Metal mixed with Operatic and Folk elements. The topics of the songs are based on the Tolkien works and sing of Orcs and Trolls (even Gollum has his own song). The group has a lot of great stuff going on and the female vocalist Kaisa surely can hold her own against contemporaries such as Liv Kristine while Mykkanen growls like his Black Metal peers. Leave it to Finland to offer this band up as the Country is making sure that Metal remains fresh and exciting. The group is made up of a whopping seven members and includes two Brothers with Kaisa Jouhki (vocals), Tomi Mykkanen (vocals), Jussi Rautio (lead guitars), Jyri Vahvanen (guitar), Timo Honkanen (bass), Maria (keyboards, flute), and Henri Vahvanen (drums). With a lot going on across the span of the album its difficult to judge at a first and second listen. You will find yourself needing a few more takes at it to fully absorb the deft complexity of their playing. The band will hold an appeal to not only fans of music like Korpiklaani and Fintroll or Leave’s Eyes but also those that enjoy their music taking them to far away lands and fantastic places. Favored numbers on the release are “Valier – Queen Of The Valar”, “Trollshaws” & “Cloaked In Her Unlight”.

Give this a listen and bear in mind the costume and mystique they bring to the table is far from cliché, it in fact touches levels of creativity that more Metal bands should take part in with their own bands. I recommend this 3rd album from the group and while I also have limited background in them I can safely say that “Third Age Of The Sun” is a fantastic place to begin your own explorations. Go there and back again with Battlelore.

Track Listing:
1. Usvainen Rhun
2. Storm Of The Blades
3. Ghan Of The Woods
4. Gwaitch Mirdain
5. Trollshaws
6. Elves Of Luva
7. Valier – Queen Of The Valar
8. Thousand Caves
9. Cloaked In Her Unlight
10. Of Orcs And Elves
11. Touch Of Green And Gold
12. Pallando – Forgotten Wizards
13. Gollum’s Cry

Official Web site: www.battlelore.net

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