Century Media CD
Borknagar meets Arcturus?
Yes, indeed, the upcoming record of Borknagar indeed sounds like this. The mastermind of this band Ã˜ystein Garnes Brun offered us probably one of the greatest works in his career. As a matter of fact, the returning of ICS Vortex in the band was the most important thing since 2000. There is no doubt that Mr.Vortex is one of the most original vocalist in the extreme metal and his returning in the band was the most crucial thing!
But, also one more thing has happened. It seems that after the returning o Vortex even Vintersorg has push his own limits and provide us with the greatest vocals that he has ever done! I must admit that I am not a big fan of Vintersorg but on the other he has done a great vocal lines this time for Borknagar; one thing for sure: the most suitable vocals that he has ever done!
In fact, I could even go further and label the forthcoming full-length of Borknagar as a symphonic extreme metal opus since , here and there, keyboards could become the leading instrument. Of course, ''Urd'' isn't a symphonic piece of work as for example the latest Dimmu Borgir is, but yet the keyboards are too evident.
Album starts with indeed bombastic track ''Epochalypse'' and this particular song could even present the entire work since it is very effective one. Of course, the other songs are calmer, but anyhow, there is a evident difference between each song. But, yet one thing is for sure, the album has something that is hard to describe. It's a combination between monumental energy and primordial pulsing, a perfect balance between elegant brutality and monumental emotion. Musical and lyrical-wise ''Urd'' expresses and reflect the primordial pulsing that dwells within the origin(s) of mankind.
The vocal mixture and combination of clean vocals between Vortex and Vintersorg is a more then perfect one, plus the black metal vocals suit in the best possible way. So, the final product is more then briliant and it could not be better. After all it represents the highest level of art that one band could reach. One could notice that the new album is a combination between standard (new and old) Borknagar with some extravagant influences coming directly from their colleague Arcturus and truly observing there are some obvious links with Arcturus.
My personal favorite is the track ''Forstfire''. This particular track remains me (I don't now really why:) on Blind Guardian. ICS Vortex has offered us there one of the best vocal performances in the metal history. The song is so monumental and the eruption of emotions more then evident!
In one way or another 'Urd'' could stand as the most mature album of Borknagar and probably is the best record ever that this Norwegian act has released so far. Recommender !
Marko Miranovic (10)
METAL SOUND #