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Turisas have reached a high status during their short life due to a dose of qualitative music, distinctive originality, professionalism and never-ending artistic ambition. After “Battle Metal” and “The Varangian Way”, the Finnish sextet sent in the third defender of their honor called “Stand Up and Fight” – and the title is no coincidence. The essential core is gradually preserved along with most of the characteristics, while the Finns throw themselves into the bloody battle and experiment with music, without hesitating even for a second. That´s exactly what Turisas` new effort is all about - each necessary ingredient from the recipe for a grand magnum opus is present, from "Warlord" Mathias Nygård´s favorite bright-shining martial themes to the successful instrumental expansion.
Turisas deliver their bravest, most extravagant and multi-layered product to date, ready to compete even with their infamous debut. After a few spins you realize you`re involved in something extraordinary, and after some more you`re already brothers in arms with the Vikings. The strong impression is born through the storytelling genius of Mathias who shaped the conceptual side of “Stand Up and Fight”, its lyrical backbone, back in 2005, even before the release of “The Varangian Way”. Despite the fact that the songs are connected and renew the journey from the previous record, they sound fascinating even on their own. Yet the actual difference between “Stand Up and Fight” and the previous two albums derives from the music - in fact, Turisas surprisingly manage to even outdo their discography showing that they never intend to count on old fame and are fully capable of taking their art to the next step on the evolutionary ladder.
The record is loaded with detailed symphonies, giving the impression of a constantly compounding epic soundtrack or a rich musical fiesta with lots of surprises on its way. The musicians are at their best and yet they`re always unpredictable: traversing from echoing battle anthems like “The March of the Varangian Guard” and the furious “Take the Day”, through the joyful Alestorm-mannered “Hunting Pirates” and the symphonic feast “Venetoi! Prasnoi!”, all the way down to the touching final acts “End of an Empire” and “The Bosphorous Freezes Over”. Warlord tends to stick to his clean vocals and fits perfectly to the orchestra background, which is created with the help of some famed Finnish philharmonic musicians. The arrangements are the richest this band ever composed and, being additionally complicated with clever choir parts, they manage to polish the appearance of the entire musical scale even further.
Clearly bands that still manage to stay clear of repeating themselves are diminishing. But one can always count on certain names to fill the ranks, e.g. Turisas. With “Stand Up and Fight” the Finnish warriors leave their names in the records of history and seal them with the blood of every enemy foolish enough to cross their path.
Dilyana Delcheva, transl. K.Weber
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