|Review: Hel - Falland Vörandi|
Label: Det Germanske Folket
Year released: 2005
Genre: Pagan Metal
Review online: April 22, 2008
Reviewed by: Pagan Shadow
Rated 3.67/5 (73.33%) (3 Votes)
Hel is amongst the first Pagan Metal act hailing from Germany, land of so many great Pagan/Folk bands. Falland Vörandi took four years to complete, and no less than 16 guest musicians helped create a sophisticated piece of heathen music. A concept album based on the story of the death/fall of Baldur, son of Wotan, god of light and pureness.
Twenty compositions, if you please, showing mature songwriting, skilled musicianship, and a love for mother earth. Nature samplings and acoustic guitars going hand in hand with harsher Pagan/Black Metal parts, varied male vocals, some female voices, choirs and a wide variety of instruments. Calmer, more folkloric moments, built on the aforementioned nature sounds and acoustic parts, completed by mouth harps and flutes, meet with the kicking Black Metal assaults. Orchestrations on symphonic keyboards are offered, but violins, horns and other classical instruments are showing up as well. The vocals are nothing but excellent, varying from wicked to theatrical at times, fitting very well the story telling aspect of this opus. The excellence of the song writing makes it hard to pinpoint the highlights, but I have some favorite compositions like: "Erwachen", "Asgards", "Traur" and the superb symphonic piece closing the album, "Abschied".
Falland Vörandi has been playing quite a lot lately, and is for me one of the best Pagan/Folk metal I've ever heard. A must for fans of this great genre of metal. Hails to Hel!
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