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Vintersorg - Hedniskhjärtad CD (album) cover

HEDNISKHJÄRTAD

Vintersorg

 

Tech/Extreme Prog Metal

3.08 | 3 ratings

From Progarchives.com, the ultimate progressive rock music website

JJLehto
Prog Reviewer
3 stars Vintersorg is a very interesting band. Frontman Andreas Hedlund set out to create a black metal album, but using mostly clean vocals as well as some folk elements. That is exactly what we have this album. I am hesitant to call it "Black Metal" and while "Folk Metal" could suffice I have no qualms with calling this album progressive metal.

This is because while it does have many of the key features of black metal such as heavily distorted, distant guitars, simple drumming often using double bass and blast beats, (which was recorded on a drum machine) and one guy taking of everything, (mostly) resulting in layered tracks. Also, this album has a pretty bad sound quality. While most people do not like this obviously, black metal bands pride themselves, (and go out of their way) to make sure their albums have poor sound quality. This is so it has a raw, brutal feeling.

All that being said, this is NOT a black metal album. True black metal has long, repetitive songs that are simple and really have no structure. This album is actually fairly progressive. There are several sections in each song that are quite abrupt and different. In any song you may hear acoustic melodies with lovely keyboard or blistering blast beats and brutal intensity, and everything in between.

There is also a level of musicianship on this album. While black metal does not require much musical skill, (it is almost all tremolo picking and simple, brutal riffs and in fact they often do not care about musical talent) Andreas really does have some musical talent. Also black metal uses exclusively harsh vocals. This album is the complete opposite, using mostly clean vocals. It should be noted that Andreas' vocals are epic. Literally. It sounds he could lead a Viking war march! When he does use harsh vocals it is not the typical high pitched shrieking of black metal, but more a shrill growling. These are often used during very intense sections, and it is perfect. A ten minute song of blast beats and shrieking is going to get boring, but since it is not overdone on this album when you DO get to an intense part you can really feel the intensity of it. Moderation is always the key to success.

I spent a lot of time trying to explain why album is not black metal and why I do think it is indeed prog-metal. However, the best way for you to decide is to listen. I would highly recommend this album for ANY fan of prog-metal as well as some more open minded proggers. This album is not that "extreme" in reality and if you listen to it, I think you will be rewarded.

My favorite songs from the album are "Norrland" and "Hednaorden". However, "Stilla" is a nice song but frankly gets boring. This album, (which is really an EP) is quite short, and the sound quality is pretty poor. So while it is a good album, it certainly has its downsides and is not meant for anyone. However, if you like prog-metal I think you should give it try.

Three Stars

JJLehto | 3/5 |

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