Winter is in the midst, my hometown is covered by snow. In these frosty days it’s an especial pleasure to listen albums like this. ‘LandawarijaR‘ is a last creation of Norway band Helheim, full of atmosphere and unexpected musical patterns.
Big number of guest vocalists such as William Hut, Morten Egeland, Bjornar from Black Hole Generator and others makes this album more interesting. An artwork, however, is quite typical, but the logo made interesting. It’s a second artwork in this style, and I pretty like these works, they aren’t like previous at all. Of course, there are many things changed from 1993 beside artworks. Recording quality got better, and for sure it can be said that the band became more inventive. An album echoes with previous release, even if sometimes it seems that the band a little bit away from the northern cold topics. But 15 years in a row writing the same music – only AC/DC can make it.
There are seven songs in an album. They not so made in one style, so it’s interesting to listen to them and to write about them. So, the opening one, “Ymr”: clean vocals and mystical sound intrigues and invites to the worlds of Scandinavian mythology.
Guitar bust in next song’s intro makes to listen with interest. An intro ends with exciting riff, that cause pictures of falling. It sounds like burning fire, move through a frost and nosedive without any hope for wings. Cutting pace changes aren’t allow to a listener to get bored and require to listen to them. I want also to mention nearly Blackmore-style solos apart. I can’t really say, if the band focused on this while writing, but as Ritchie’s fan I heard certain similarities and appreciated it much. A special highlight of the track became the calling sound of horn, that breaks through blast beats. “Baklengs Mot Intet” is definitely my favorite in this album.
“Rista Blodørn” is a harmonic, interesting song with long anxious play, that force an atmosphere. You should know such things like Vikings ritual executions to understand this song fully. Song’s name can be translated as «Bloody Eagle». It compiles to an execution when a man’s back was chopped and his edges were unfolded back to get wings. Then his lungs were polled out. Was this kind of execution real or it’s just Christian fiction, that tried to show pagans as cruel executioners, we still don’t know.
Forth song is an album’s self-titled, but I can’t really say that it impressed me much. Compiled to another song it lacks originality. It’s totally inherent to a style, but with this I can’t say it’s bad.
“Ouroboros” initially absorbs by its spirituality. Very extraordinary floating vocal line attracts. Even the song’s name make you think about it. Ouroboros is an ancient symbol of cyclical character, closed spatial and temporal range, and the album’s theme in many cases it involves replacing the pagan history by the Christian faith. Maybe history is cyclical also?
Sixth song is more filler, what’s interesting in it is the first solo and recitative. But the last one, “Endadagr” that can be translated as «very last day», is an epic, long and kind of psychedelic song that worth your full attention. A great end for a truly high level album.
For the end I can add that three of seven songs are ideal for walking on streets covered by snow. If you walk fast as me, of course. Which songs – I wouldn’t say. I offer you to listen to this album, and find them.