Windir - Arntor review
|Release date:||October 1999|
02. Arntor, Ein Windir
03. Kong Hydnes Haug
04. Svartesmeden Og Lundamyrstrollet
Here it is: the album that began all folk metal. The album that was epic to such proportions that it is widely recognized today as a metal masterpiece. The album that inspired Finntroll to play pagan metal. The album of a dead man, who unfortunately passed away at the end of 2003, freezing to death in Reppastolen, Norway while walking home to his mountain cabin.
Arntor is an album that cannot be described easily. Through it's chilly, cold guitar riffs and glassy, harmonized melodies it delivers an ensemble of feelings and emotions that is yet to be rivaled in the world of metal. The album guides you through dense forests, snowy landscapes, frozen fjords, and bare frostbitten prairies, with a contrast of fast riffs and drumming, and slow melodies, causing one to enter a sort of trance that transports them to a place where they have only dared to dream about. The melodies on this album are simply extraordinary. Combined with the epic choruses and catchy synths, you will be frozen in your seat while listening to the grandeur of certain passages, hoping you had discovered this album earlier.
On to the technical part, this album has been done by one single person, Valfar, who played all instruments on this album. Listening to the record, it is pretty impressive to hear such a high level of musicianship done by a single individual. The level of creativity is very high in this album: a number of songs have become instant classics among metal fans - "Arntor Ein Windir", "Svartesmeden Og Ludamyrstrollet", "Saknet", and "Ending...".
I must say that this album contains a lot of keyboards, which is uncommon for traditional metal. This gives a weird, but folky atmosphere to the album, sometimes lifting it to extreme heights. The guitars are predominant in this record, as well as the keyboards and drums. The bass cannot be heard that much, but in the whole it gives quite a unique feeling. Fast tremolo picking can be heard throughout the songs, balanced by slow melodies that give a "dreamy" feeling.
In conclusion, I would say that this album is among those who had made a lasting impact on the world of metal. If you haven't heard this album yet, you should not be wasting your time reading this review, you should buy it immediately, and one thing that I can guarantee is that you will not regret it. The wonder that is Arntor will forever lie deep in the vaults of metal music. I would personally rate it amongst my all-time favorite metal albums.
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