Rating:
4.7
Turisas - Turisas2013
23 August 2013


01. For Your Own Good
02. Ten More Miles
03. Piece By Piece
04. Into The Free
05. Run Bhang-Eater, Run!
06. Greek Fire
07. The Days Passed
08. No Good Story Ever Starts With Drinking Tea
09. We Ride Together


Is this really for your own good? The opening track for the new effort from Turisas insists to us that it is. Well, all right then, if you say so Turisas, you gave us albums like The Varangian Way so I trust you on this. Let's hear it.

Well before the album's end it was obvious that things aren't the same. This is different to their previous releases but it isn't fresh as much as it is cut back to the bare essentials of their sound and stripped down. Gone is the epic grandeur of armed forces on the march of Battle Metal and moving in determined stride to "Holmgard and Beyond."

It's some sort of "contemporary Turisas", breaking through the medieval thematic atmosphere of previous albums in the attempt to make the music more relevant to the modern reality of the music's fans. Though I wonder, do I really need to be reminded that I'm not actually a battle-hardened Viking seeking my own fame? Unfortunately I'm already aware of this fact.

All of this seems self-mocking and the lyrics are clearly attempting to appeal to the sense of humour of fans. Obviously this isn't supposed to be a serious album in any way, shape or form. It's supposed to be fun and all seriousness is left at the door.

Such a confusing departure from their established themes and sound is guaranteed to be divisive, so not fun for all, as it is as likely to appeal to fans as much as drive them away in disappointment and frustration. Turisas2013, I'm sure, has been a stab in the back for many, performed with a blunt blade and haphazard aim and is more likely to hinder than deal any real damage.

The guitar work is mundane and lacks creativity despite its punchy nature, thanks to the ample production. For the most part the song writing is reliant on the orchestral backing, keyboards and choir for any kind of dynamism, though it is managed with the same energetic pace, heavy rhythms and understanding of simple hooks. The tracks are dependent on standard and repetitive rock drumming and devoid of all the creative vigour that was necessary to uphold the likes of The Varangian Way.

The most noticeable absence, however, is the folk instrumentation. The album as a whole isn't folk metal. It abandons the genre almost entirely in preference for a "bare bones" approach with the deliberate addition of unexpected elements, such as the country western feel of "Ten More Miles" which is a strangely symphonic line-dance in honour of the gods. Zeus sporting spurs and cowboy hat in front of a divine orchestra. You get the point; it's an odd and unwelcome mishmash.

Only "Greek Fire" really retains a bit of old flame, elsewhere the folk elements are infrequent and usually unnoticeable such as in "Piece By Piece" where they quickly fade into insignificance behind the guitars.

Without a coherent theme the album is instead tied together by the reliably catchy chorus and melody based structure, providing ample opportunity for some effective clean and harsh vocals. However the latter aren't as significant as the cleanly sung lines, such as those in the infectious and self referential anthem of "Ten More Miles."

I can tell these tracks were all written in good fun; "Run Bhang-Eater Run!," to use a particularly varied example, is a ridiculous song initiating in folk fashion with an Indian vibe before you enter circus frivolity which is followed by an orgasm in a jazz bar. The album can be amusing and nonsensical where others will likely find it a betrayal of what they have come to appreciate from the band's image.

Turisas went for something deliberately different here, something produced for a live setting no doubt, but as it stands as an album Turisas2013 is an unnecessary, confusing, divisive although admittedly catchy departure from an established sound.

Performance: 7
Songwriting: 4
Originality: 5
Production: 8


Band profile: Turisas
Album: Turisas2013


 



Written on 19.10.2013 by
R'Vannith
R'Vannith enjoys music, he's hoping you do too.
More reviews by R'Vannith ››



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Blakheim - 19.10.2013 at 16:50  
Totally agree, I liked Stand Up and Fight even with it's commercialism it has some good tunes, "End Of An Empire" is fucking sick if you ask me, but in here, we have nothing to hold, everything sounds lame and uninspired... anyway, they're obviously not coming back... "lost are the days..."
LeKiwi - 19.10.2013 at 17:39  
Is that genuinely the album title?
R'Vannith - 19.10.2013 at 17:46  
Written by LeKiwi on 19.10.2013 at 17:39

Is that genuinely the album title?


Unfortunately yes, goes to show just how lackadaisical they were about it. I think it was deliberate on their part though, surely a band couldn't really care that little to find themselves a decent album name... It strangely reflects the music inside it though.
IronAngel - 19.10.2013 at 23:03  
The album title may not be that clever or tasteful, but I do get the point. They want to underscore that this is the state of the band today, the 2013 version of Turisas. It's not very good, but I don't think it's terrible. The album is, though.
Array - 19.10.2013 at 23:13  
Written by IronAngel on 19.10.2013 at 23:03

The album title may not be that clever or tasteful, but I do get the point. They want to underscore that this is the state of the band today, the 2013 version of Turisas. It's not very good, but I don't think it's terrible. The album is, though.

Makes me wonder how they will progress onwards from now, with their themes. I didn't expect them to get to the modern day this fast. What next... TURISAS2120-SPACEADVENTURES.
Doc Godin - 19.10.2013 at 23:16  
What a piece of garbage...on so many levels.

No Good Story Ever Starts With Listening To This Album.
Array - 19.10.2013 at 23:19  
I personally find it quite decent, but it's clearly the worst from them.
psykometal - 20.10.2013 at 02:09  
I haven't found Turisas interesting since The Varangian Way.
moe5512 - 20.10.2013 at 02:36  
Well, at least they did something different with this folky metal thingy But unless you're retardly open minded you won't like this album.. uh, no offense
Loathera - 20.10.2013 at 06:40  
I personally place it above Stand Up And Fight, which I really didn't like
metalwolf - 20.10.2013 at 19:08  
I saw them performing on Paganfest this year and I didn't like what I saw. The audience only got enthusiastic when they played their old material. Says it all, doesn't it?
Krovikhan - 20.10.2013 at 19:26  
Turisas2013 is the most hazardous release of the year and I like it. It's no so good as the previous albums but It's enjoyable.
Zaphod - 20.10.2013 at 20:28  
Written by Array on 19.10.2013 at 23:13

What next... TURISAS2120-SPACEADVENTURES.

I've never listened to Turisas, but that would definitely make me do so.
AngelofDeth - 21.10.2013 at 01:33  
Terrible Album! And I hate say it but...

The review is almost as unfocused and scatter-shot as the album itself.
Mattybu - 21.10.2013 at 03:41  
Shits so modern #Turisas2013 #VARANGIANswag #NoGoodStory
R'Vannith - 23.10.2013 at 03:00  
Written by AngelofDeth on 21.10.2013 at 01:33

Terrible Album! And I hate say it but...

The review is almost as unfocused and scatter-shot as the album itself.


You're free to share your opinion, can't say I disagree with you either Guess the album had that effect on me it was that disappointing...
R'Vannith - 23.10.2013 at 03:02  
Written by Mattybu on 21.10.2013 at 03:41

Shits so modern #Turisas2013 #VARANGIANswag #NoGoodStory


This made me chuckle, thanks man
WinterMadness - 04.11.2013 at 18:10  
I think the title Turisas2013 is a satire on how important issues of today are reduced to sound bytes and hashtags. They' know that no matter what they call the album, and no matter how deep the title is, the record company and people are just going to promote it with something trite like #Turisas2013, so they cut out the middle-man.
Every new release from a band pisses off a few fans. Everyone has a point where a band isn't "tr00" enough for them.
In my opinion, while this album may not quite be "battle metal" anymore, it's still 100% Turisas.
There are folk metal fans and there are Turisas fans; the former group will bitch and moan and move on to the safer, more predictable waters of bands who put out the same album every 2 years, while the latter group excitedly awaits what Turisas has in store next.
I love folk metal, and I love Turisas. Just because those two things aren't found in the same band anymore doesn't mean I'm going to stop listening to them.
Ellrohir - 04.11.2013 at 23:27  
I find this review disturbingly generous
R'Vannith - 05.11.2013 at 14:09  
Written by WinterMadness on 04.11.2013 at 18:10

I think the title Turisas2013 is a satire on how important issues of today are reduced to sound bytes and hashtags. They' know that no matter what they call the album, and no matter how deep the title is, the record company and people are just going to promote it with something trite like #Turisas2013, so they cut out the middle-man.
Every new release from a band pisses off a few fans. Everyone has a point where a band isn't "tr00" enough for them.
In my opinion, while this album may not quite be "battle metal" anymore, it's still 100% Turisas.
There are folk metal fans and there are Turisas fans; the former group will bitch and moan and move on to the safer, more predictable waters of bands who put out the same album every 2 years, while the latter group excitedly awaits what Turisas has in store next.
I love folk metal, and I love Turisas. Just because those two things aren't found in the same band anymore doesn't mean I'm going to stop listening to them.


Folk metal fans might not expect a lot of change, but I don't think that means they won't appreciate it when it comes. Problem with this album is it very nearly abandons the genre entirely, not a wise move to make I reckon. If you like Turisas for their folk you'll be disappointed. If you like Turisas overall and are prepared to sacrifice the folk element you may or may not be disappointed with this album. The major problem with this, in my perspective, is that it isn't nearly as well written, regardless of whether its "folky" enough or not.
R'Vannith - 05.11.2013 at 14:12  
Written by Ellrohir on 04.11.2013 at 23:27

I find this review disturbingly generous


Apologies for that, but I can't deny that this is performed well enough for Turisas standards to make the poor song writing at least a little bit catchy.
Ellrohir - 05.11.2013 at 14:40  
Well...i adore joke bands...but i cant stand "serious" projects that unintentionally turn joke, which is pretty much this case...and it is sad because after 2nd album this band has potential...
R'Vannith - 05.11.2013 at 14:50  
Written by Ellrohir on 05.11.2013 at 14:40

Well...i adore joke bands...but i cant stand "serious" projects that unintentionally turn joke, which is pretty much this case...and it is sad because after 2nd album this band has potential...


I agree completely, it seems like they're unnecessarily betraying themselves.
Ellrohir - 06.11.2013 at 21:19  
Just listened to "Battle Metal" today...sigh

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