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Finntroll - what to say without repeating yourself? Well, this band has been delivering high quality for many years, produced musical milestones and inspired many bands (not to mention those who just shamelessly copy them). They belong to the "just-grab-it-without-thinking-twice" CD shelf, where I usually also put Finnish acts like Amorphis, Swallow The Sun and Before The Dawn. That means, writing a totally new and surprising review about outputs of those bands could only happen if they totally fucked it up by including Free Jazz/Bepop, Peking Opera vocals, jodeling or Tibetan bone-flutes into their sound profiles. Which - hopefully - is never going to happen ...
Actually, you cannot really be sure about Finntroll when it comes to jodeling and bone flutes... because the band has a faible for weird sounds, featuring e.g. jaw harp, bagpiges, brass and banjo on this new CD, and the rhythms include Humppa and Klezmer music elements, which might lead to huge dance/mosh pits at the next Finntroll-Gigs. But now right from the start...
The band´s 5th full-length album took almost 3 years to be released, and it takes of with a dramatic Intro "Blodmarsch", followed by an aggressive Metal piece "Solsagen". Apropos aggression - singer Vreth, despite maintaining his slim features, has grown into the role of a martial Finntroll front man, something I could see at their recent live gig, and you can hear it clearly also on this album. He also pulls it off to add a magic-hypnotic quality to Swedish language during those mellow "Bardic" parts(Galgasång, Tiden Utan Tid) . Aggressive and bombastic are adjectives to describe the sound, which might be caused by the new official band member, the second keyboarder Virta. The Trolls give the full scope of their abilities, grooving Folk Metal as well as DM blast beats, easy sing-along-parts (Under Bergets Rot) as well as complex Black-Metal-ish growl structures (Fornfamnad). Evil Trollishness as well as droll playfulness, expressed by acoustic tongue-in-cheek tracks like Dråp, inspired by Danny Elfman and Tim Burton movies.
To cut it short - Nifelvind continues the style of its predecessors and has the qualities of another Finntroll classic. Fans will not be disappointed, and who has not checked this band out yet - it´s high time!