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Post Rock/Math rock • United Kingdom

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Nordic Giants biography
Formed in Brighton, UK in 2010

NORDIC GIANTS are an instrumental post rock duo from England consisting of enigmatic members Loki and Roka. The duo plays extensively under masks and with concept heavy performances often consisting of projections and the music being a soundtrack for videos and the whole overall experience. Along with collaborators the duo recorded a couple of records and two major albums at the time of this writing and has toured with the likes of GOD IS AN ASTRONAUT and 65DAYOFSTATIC. The music can be recommended to fans of bands like SIGUR ROS or THIS WILL DESTROY YOU but also ambient pop like BJORK.

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NORDIC GIANTS discography

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NORDIC GIANTS top albums (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

4.27 | 11 ratings
A Séance of Dark Delusions
4.44 | 9 ratings
Amplify Human Vibration
3.35 | 8 ratings

NORDIC GIANTS Live Albums (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

NORDIC GIANTS Videos (DVD, Blu-ray, VHS etc)

NORDIC GIANTS Boxset & Compilations (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

5.00 | 1 ratings
Build Seas, Dismantle Suns

NORDIC GIANTS Official Singles, EPs, Fan Club & Promo (CD, EP/LP, MC, Digital Media Download)

4.67 | 3 ratings
A Tree as Old as Me
5.00 | 3 ratings
4.33 | 3 ratings
Speed the Crows Nest
5.00 | 3 ratings
Build Seas
5.00 | 3 ratings
Dismantle Suns
5.00 | 1 ratings
0.00 | 0 ratings
7 Depths of Consciousness


Showing last 10 reviews only
 Symbiosis by NORDIC GIANTS album cover Studio Album, 2022
3.35 | 8 ratings

Nordic Giants Post Rock/Math rock

Review by lukretio

3 stars What's more metal than two mysterious figures whose real identity is unknown and who go by the name of Loki and R'ka, appear in public wearing masques made with feather and bone, and play in a band called Nordic Giants? Well, it turns out that, despite the sinister image they project, Nordic Giants do not play metal at all. The British duo, who have been around since 2010, play instead a very cinematic and highly original form of post-rock imbued with pathos and melancholia. Self-released in early 2022, Symbiosis is the Giants' third full-length album, following up on their previous releases (both via Kscope), the acclaimed 2015 debut A S'ance of Dark Delusions and the soundtrack album Amplify Human Vibration (2017).

Symbiosis is an album of mostly instrumental music, with only two of its eight tracks featuring vocals and a third song containing sparse spoken samples. The music is constructed around the unusual combination of piano and drums, which are the main instruments played by Loki and R'ka, respectively. The guitar work is kept to a minimum (R'ka occasionally plays bowed guitar and guitarist Bill Merrick from SaturdaySun is credited for additional session work). Sonic power and impact are instead provided by Loki's synths, trumpet and horns, as well as by lush strings and cello arrangements. There is something special and highly immersive about this strange sonic recipe that gives Nordic Giants a rather unique sound. Piano music is naturally inclined to give off a great sense of melancholy and this is further enhanced by Loki's horns and trumpet playing. The fact that the piano is often left barren and alone to play against a sophisticated drumming backdrop further transmits a strong sense of apocalyptic forlornness that suits perfectly the dramatic and cinematic feel of Nordic Giants' music.

It takes a few spins for the beauty of Symbiosis to sink in. The first couple of times I played the record, I was left underwhelmed. The songs felt like the image on the album cover: colourful explosions of smoke that quickly dissipate, leaving only a fleeting impression on me. Repeated listens are a must here, as the songs start to take a grip on the listener only when all details come fully into focus. Only then does one learn to navigate the constant ebbs and flows of Symbiosis and can appreciate the subtlety of its arrangements, the beauty of the melodies, and the splendid emotional arc it traces across its eight songs. From the highly cinematic and electric opener 'Philosophy of Mind', to the melancholy yet oddly serene ballad 'Hjem', to the dramatic crescendos of 'Faceless', where guest singer Alex Hedley provides a monstrous performance in feel and intensity, to the uplifting melodies of 'Spheres', where Nordic Giants' other guest singer Freyja captivates with her haunting singing, to the sombre tinkering notes of 'Infinity' - Symbiosis is a spellbinding rollercoaster of emotions that keeps revealing its beauty listen after listen.

Symbiosis may not be as explosive or instantly addictive as Nordic Giants' debut album A S'ance of Dark Delusions. It's subtler and more subdued, but it also feels more assured and mature, and charged with a more distinct sonic identity that renders an already unique band even more special. Nordic Giants' piano-&-drums brand of instrumental post-rock may not be for everyone reading this (it's far removed from metal, after all), but it may appeal to fans of cinematic post-metal acts like Anathema and Alcest. Like theirs, this is immersive music for inner travels that will not leave you indifferent, should you dare to try it.

[Originally written for The Metal Observer]

Thanks to historian9 for the artist addition. and to Quinino for the last updates

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