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Amon Amarth - Berserker Award winner

Amon Amarth
Berserker
by Craig Rider at 20 May 2019, 7:35 AM

Metal maniacs, rejoice! I am proud to present to you: AMON AMARTH; signed via Metal Blade Records, hailing from Swedish grounds - performing Melodic Death Metal, on their 11th Studio Album entitled: "Berserker" (released May 3rd, 2019).

Since formation in 1988 as SCUM until 1992; the band in question have made quite the reputation for themselves in the Metal universe, releasing 11 synonymous albums and just recently - the stunning "The Pursuit Of Vikings: 25 Years In The Eye Of The Storm" Live Album…I am not here to review that one, unfortunatly… yet this new record: "Berserker" brings forth a similar cattle of fish. 12 brand-spanking new tracks, ranging at around 56:45 - AMON AMARTH arrange an intricately designed formula of heavy-hitting Melodic Death Metal developments. "Fafner's Gold" begins the record; conveying an acoustic introduction, advancing into amplified adrenaline and a boistrously bouncy barrage of frenzied chugs in which gallop with high-low tempos that speed with sonically seamless solidity.

Consisting of Johan Hegg on vocals; the frontman demonstrates his signature trademark of deep, guttural growls mixed with rawly rough raspiness… offering savage screams of vengeance that rage with profusely primitive robustness. songs like "Crack The Sky" forge catchy lyricism, amalgamated with rapidly swift nimbleness & crunchy complexity – enforcing dexterously distinguished craftsmanship in which utilize versatile vehemence & variety…a groovy grandure of synchronized swings, twin guitar harmonies hardened with thunderously technical rhythms of relentlessly rambunctious melodies - one of my favorites for sure. Guitar duo Johan Söderberg & Olavi Mikkonen embellish on experimental haste; fluidly polished instrumentation, meticulous musicianship & jumpy riffs that slam with prodigious verses.

Songs like "Mjölner, Hammer Of Thor" & "Shield Wall" frolick conceptual songwriting memorability; showcasing quintessential quakes of steely precision. Ted Lundström on the audible bass batters his axe with powerful pummeling; pulsing with thumping pounds that supply infectiously injected hymns of high-octane mayhem. Drumming powerhouse Jocke Wallgren also pulverizes the sound production with pumping hammering; flamboyantly composed with organic substance, as tracks like "Valkyria" inputs an epic pianist segment that transforms into an malignant opera of symphonic terror. Implementing inventively distinctive diligence, coverging diversely creative bolts of smashing stability with sinister shines of remedious patterns that oozes with razor-sharp velocity while pursuiting with prominent originality.

"Raven's Flight" & "Ironside" rank among the snappy ones; portraying quirky results that revolve with monstrously meaty weight, and repeatable replayability that old-school AMON AMARTH supporters will relish… as well as newer fans, making a nice comparison between albums like "Fate Of Norns" & "Jomsviking". Speaking of similarities; "The Berserker At Stamford Bridge" assists a borderline foundation of this subjugation, providing punchline perseverence that's very warlike and dynamically imaginative…hinting at crisp hostility, atmospheric ambience & concretely gritty fabrications. It's not "Deceiver Of The Gods" material; though it would be tough as nails to surpass that greatness, not saying "Berserker" isn't… yet the fans should know what I mean at least. "When Once Again We Set Our Sails" manifests methodical systematics of punctilious ramifications; embodying effective barks, euphonious mellows & ominous overarchs of massive strikes that storm like a raging tornado.

"Sköll And Hati" adminsters grunty pipes, malevolent soars of ripping shreds & stampeding rampages of ruthless precision – smothered with equilibrium & efficiacious leaps of frolicking delights. "Wings Of Eagles" flies into a wildly rushing waves of boundless blitzkreig; bludgeoning blasts of crushing captivation, and elegantly exquisite fulfillments of remarkable virtuosity. Nothing particularly groundbreaking for existing fans; but it is indeed new material for hardcore veterans, and modern listeners! Overall concluding this spectacular ride of ravenous; Scandinavian Viking struggles with the epic finale: "Into The Dark", flared with an aptitude knack – using unique twilight of melodramatic momentum & stylish potential, AMON AMARTH continue to unleash talented reprisal of splendid soundscapes with sophisticated swerves…certainly outdoing themselves yet again, and is definitely worth the spin! Rock on, raise your horns to the berserker! …and sküll! \\m/

Songwriting: 9
Memorability: 9
Originality: 9
Sound Production: 9

4 Star Rating

Tracklist:
1. Fafner's Gold
2. Crack The Sky
3. Mjölner, Hammer Of Thor
4. Shield Wall
5. Valkyria
6. Raven's Flight
7. Ironside
8. The Berserker At Stamford Bridge
9. When Once Again We Can Set Our Sails
10. Sköll And Hati
11. Wings Of Eagles
12. Into The Dark
Lineup:
Johan Hegg - Vocals
Ted Lundström - Bass
Johan Söderberg - Guitar
Olavi Mikkonen - Guitar
Jocke Wallgren - Drums
Record Label: Metal Blade Records
     


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