Bathory - Blood On Ice review



Reviewer:
8.2

253 users:
8.25
Band: Bathory
Album: Blood On Ice
Release date: May 1996


01. Intro
02. Blood On Ice
03. Man Of Iron
04. One Eyed Old Man
05. The Sword
06. The Stallion
07. The Woodwoman
08. The Lake
09. Gods Of Thunder Of Wind And Of Rain
10. The Ravens
11. The Revenge Of Blood On Ice


One of the best albums by Bathory, although not the best, (I save that spot for Hammerheart), it's their most unique as far as storytelling though. The entire album is the story of vengeance for a young man whose village was destroyed and family killed. All of the song lyrics are based upon a story written by Quorthon, and the lyrics follow in a summarized chronological version of the short story. Blood on Ice really follows the typical low quality epic sound that similar viking-esque Bathory albums have. One of the different things on this album, besides the telling of one great story, is the largely varied song types in the album. From soft arppegios in "The Ravens" to epic, empowering songs hailing the gods in "Gods of Thunder of Wind and of Rain." Quorthon did not vary these song just because he felt like it either. The music in these songs all fit the tone of the lyrics they represent. It appears that the music was based upon the lyrics, not vice-versa as is common with many other bands. Every song on the album, including the intro, really helps to tell the story and makes it much more submerssive than a movie or book could ever be. Each song also captures the emotion of these events and helps pass that emotion onto the listener, whether that be anger, sadness, or a lust for vengeance.

As is common with Quorthon and the genre in general, a lot of extra ambient effects are also added, whether it's just an operatic chorus or simply a man walking through the snow on his horse. Quorthon did all that he could to make an epic album and to help his storytelling, and quite frankly, he did a good job. The music is more or less quite simple, yet varied enough times and at the right times to not get repetitive in most songs. The drums seem much more of a factor this time around than previous Bathory releases, although the guitar is still the prevalent instrument as it has always been for Bathory. In addition to this, Quorthon really shows us that he can sing fairly well and can display some emotion, in songs like "Man of Iron" and "The Ravens." Unlike so many other viking folk metal albums, this one really helps to show the more human side of the Northern peoples and it is great that Quorthon takes so much pride in his national heritage. Blood on Ice is a great, long album full of light, epic songs, and only a few tracks with poor music in them makes for an all around superb album. Although this release was far less influential than those of the 80's and early 90's, it did get Bathory out of a little slump and put them right back onto the metal map.


Rating breakdown
Performance: 8
Songwriting: 9
Originality: 9
Production: 7

Written by Marcus | 13.05.2007


 


Guest review disclaimer:
This is a guest review, which means it does not necessarily represent the point of view of the MS Staff.


Comments

Comments: 12   Visited by: 113 users
14.05.2007 - 13:50
Katatronik
Angel of Lust
I agree, surely not their best Viking-era album, though here there are some "jewels" anyway...
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"The oldest and strongest emotion of mankind is fear,
and the oldest and strongest kind of fear is fear of the unknown."
Howard Phillips Lovecraft
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29.06.2007 - 08:25
Paganblood
The Aryaputra
good review, 'Man Of Iron' is my best track in this album... and yes, I'd also save 'that spot' for Hammerheart
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that which shines without names and forms...
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07.07.2007 - 10:32
Grey_Dandelion
An excellent album-especially the woodwoman and the lake are epic masterpieces!the only mediocre track is the last one...i would give a little bit higher rate...
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15.04.2008 - 10:41
Uirapuru
Liver Failure
Written by Grey_Dandelion on 07.07.2007 at 10:32

An excellent album-especially the woodwoman and the lake are epic masterpieces!


These are my fav tracks too!
And this album my friends, is one of the greatest comes back of all time... after the horrids ''Requiem'' and ''Octagon'' (god forgive Quorthon's soul for that), bathory arise from the ashes and release this great album, my third favorite after ''Blood Fire Death'' and ''Hammerheart'';
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member of the true crusade against old school heavy metal, early 80s thrash, NWOBHM, traditional doom, first and second wave black metal, old school death metal, US power metal, 70s prog rock and atmospheric doomsludgestoner. o/
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14.06.2009 - 13:05
Elio
Red Nightmare
Maybe the weakest among Bathory's Viking albums. I don't know how somebody can think this is even the best one.
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IntoPlighT said: "Slipknot is 15 years old how the fuck is that Nu metal?"

BEST. QUOTE. EVER.
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19.06.2009 - 12:05
Smurfophagist
This album deserves a higher rating, an 8.5 at least. you shouldn't have given the production a 7, because I feel, and it has been said by many other people many times, that the production fits the music perfectly.
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19.06.2009 - 20:59
Marcus
Doit Like Bernie
Written by Smurfophagist on 19.06.2009 at 12:05

This album deserves a higher rating, an 8.5 at least. you shouldn't have given the production a 7, because I feel, and it has been said by many other people many times, that the production fits the music perfectly.


While I agree that the production does fit the music very well, I still just based the rating on how well it was produced overall. The album is fairly grainy/lo-fi, especially for the genre, and I personally prefer cleaner production, but that's just me.

Also, I rated it a little low because, while I do enjoy the album, I think there are still quite a few weak songs, especially the title track, which brought the whole album down.
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20.06.2009 - 15:25
Smurfophagist
I dunno, I personally liked the title track.
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20.06.2009 - 19:16
Marcus
Doit Like Bernie
Written by Smurfophagist on 20.06.2009 at 15:25

I dunno, I personally liked the title track.


Oops, I meant The Revenge of Blood on Ice, not Blood on Ice. My b.
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21.06.2009 - 00:10
Smurfophagist
Written by Marcus on 20.06.2009 at 19:16

Written by Smurfophagist on 20.06.2009 at 15:25

I dunno, I personally liked the title track.


Oops, I meant The Revenge of Blood on Ice, not Blood on Ice. My b.


that I understand. I've often asked myself what the hell is that track doing there.
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Having a signature is an absolute must.
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08.04.2010 - 14:43
JohnWayneGacy666
This album is horrible honestly i would give it 6.5 out of 10, Because the bathory albums i do own are better then this, its not worth buying this album because i do own it and i am very disappointed by the quality.
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14.02.2017 - 00:39
Bad English
Masterchief
I love story line, lyrics and music, its something what I prefer as his first 2 albums and sad this needs new better mastering, sad it wont happen
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I better die, because I never will learn speek english, so I choose dieing
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