Genre: Epic Fantasy Metal
Label: Napalm Records
Am I a Battlelore fan (re: nerd)? How’s this for an answer: I LITTEREALLY teared up at the announcement that I had a promo version of Doombound waiting for me in my Napalm account. Gawk, mock and laugh all you want. (Odd Fact: I’m a much bigger fan of Battlelore than I am a fan of Tolkien’s work… weird right?)
Doombound is based around the events in The Children of Húrin (or more accurately, the life of tragic protagonist Túrin Turambar) and right off the bat, you can hear a change in Battlelore’s overall sound. For one, Doombound appears to be more Kaisa heavy. Perhaps this is due to the more melancholic content than in comparison to Third Age Of The Sun or Sword Song. Her beautiful siren is as alluring as she is in their promo photos… er… but that’s not saying that Tomi doesn’t get to rage about, no sir. His Orcish bellows are heard loudest in Olden Gods and Men As Wolves (which I’m assuming is about the Gaurwaith since I don’t have a lyric sheet anywhere).
As for the instrumental warriors; Jyri Vahvanen rides up front with some of the best guitar work you can hear within this genre. And that’s no lie! He skips about from epic power metal chords to blistering (though subdued) black metal riffs! Drummer Henri Vahvanen pulls off some inventive beats and shows a bit of growth since The Last Alliance. And speaking of improvements, the lovely Miss Maria graces us with her talents on the flute, which as far as I could tell, was missing completely from The Last Alliance. Her technique on the keys are displayed well here also. Best of all? All of this comes together in the somber instrumental sendoff (or more appropriately, burial song) Kielo.
And now for the down side: Doombound isn’t nearly as aggressive their last effort, which may throw a few of their fans for a loop. That doesn’t really seem like much of a problem given their genre and honestly, it’s not. Just thought it’d be better to say SOMETHING negative so that I wouldn’t be accused of bias… which I might be guilty of…
Overall: It’s a no brainer that if you dig the literature, you’ll dig this album, nay, this band! So pick up Doombound, love the shit out of it and then raid Battlelore’s back catalog!
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