Review of Finntroll’s ‘Vredesvävd’


Review by Ryan Murray | September 15, 2020

Folk metal band Finntroll, from Helsinki Finland, is releasing “Vredesvävd”, their first studio album in seven years via Century Media Records on Friday, September 18th!

With a career spanning over two decades, Finntroll has managed to sell over 50,000 albums in the US alone and has gained over 7 million streams of their entire catalog! 

Finntroll blends folk metal with black metal, but with their own twist it creates a unique sound! This album has something for everyone! It’s got the very recognizable sound that Finntroll is known for, and to me, definitely has a matured sound as well! Both old and potential new fans alike will find much to like within this album.

Everything on this album has been well thought out and executed. The balance of instruments and vocals is spot on. The intricacies between the melodies and vocals makes for no easy feat. Everything from the heart pounding drums, blast beats, melodic and heavy guitars, and tongue twisting lyrics, to the pulled back strings and choir-like backing vocals, this album takes twists and turns all throughout and leaves you wanting more after every track. For me, the keyboards and symphonic parts really build the emotions throughout the whole album. 

This album is a defining moment not only for Finntroll, but for folk metal as a whole. Finntroll has substantially raised the bar with this latest work and have very possibly started a new era of folk metal! 

Väktaren

This epic, symphonic and choir driven intro gives a small glimpse of what’s to come. This opening track easily sets the tone and amps you up for what’s to come.

Att Döda Med En Sten

Starting with a more folky sound with strings, this track quickly breaks out into a brutal assault of the senses! With blast beats, lots of double bass, heavy but melodic guitars and strings throughout, this track shows how versatile the whole band is. The drums are tight, and the melodies will hook you in for more. The main melody is driven with backing strings and this adds even more to the track.

Ormfolk  

The first single from this album! While there are definitely some strings throughout, this song is mostly driven by heart pounding drums and melodic, yet distorted heavy guitars! There are moments within this track that kind of emit some hardcore/punk vibes. I love how even at the faster tempos, the band stays locked in with each other! There is a blend of black metal vocals and some more hardcore like vocals on this track.

Grenars Väg

This song is probably one of my favorites from the album. It’s an awesome blend of metal and folk, and honestly just straight up fun. The beats and melodies are catchy. This song feels like The Dropkick Murphys married into black metal and this was the result of that union. This track would be amazing live as well! 

Forsen

The second single off the album starts off in your face with guitars and drums, and is definitely another favorite off of the album! The riffs are definitely another favorite of mine, with random breaks into short lasting folky sections throughout. The double bass in this song is tight! More vocal acrobats throughout this track with tongue-twisting lyrics. During the heavier parts of this track this song gives me vibes of Cradle of Filth from the “Midian” era.

Vid Häxans Härd

While we start off this track with an acoustic feel, that atmosphere is quickly changed by aggressive drums and guitars. This song is pretty aggressive all the way though, and I love the strings backing up the aggressiveness and making it even more full.

Myren

This track has got a thrash feel to it, along with definite folk influences. The vocals are fast, aggressive and in rapid-fire succession. Even if I spoke any Swedish, not sure I could keep up with it!

Stjärnors Mjöd

This track is another favorite for me and reminds me of Dimmu Borgir’s “Progenies of the Great Apocalypse”. From the guitar riffs, strings and choir-like atmosphere, to the pulse pounding tight drum fills, this song will likely be a fan favorite during live shows! 

Mask

Another in your face aggressive track, but this one starts off with a lighter and happier atmosphere for the first eight seconds before I envision a wall of death colliding! I love the skank beats throughout this one, and really love the guitars at 1:24! 

Ylaren

This song is completely different than I was expecting for an album closer! It’s just a bit lighter than I expected musically, but is still heavy with emotion. This track definitely feels a bit more experimental. I absolutely love the time changes this track is laced with. We start out by switching between what sounds like 9/8 and 6/8 then into a straight 4/4 time signature later on. Absolutely loved this as a final track!

Verdict

Overall, I’d have to give this album a 4.5 out of 5.0! In all honesty, I’ve never really been a huge fan of folk metal, but this album has changed my mind! In preparation for writing this review, I listened to not only some older works from Finntroll, but some other bands in the folk metal genre. This new work from Finntroll not only breaks down barriers for those who may not like folk metal, but it feels like a fresh new step forward for the genre as a whole. “Vredesvävd” has substantially raised the bar and has changed the face of folk metal for years to come! 

“Vredesvävd” releases this Friday, September 18th on all platforms, so be sure to check it out!

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