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Bolverk – Uaar

Bolverk
Uaar
by Dave "That Metal Guy" Campbell at 12 July 2022, 9:42 AM

BOLVERK is “Extreme Norwegian Metal exploring the borders of the genre and are actively working with the contrasts that all our inspirations have embedded in us. Their music is about melody as well as brutality, and they want you to sing along as well as wanting to furiously bang your head. The name “Bolverk” is originally one of Odin’s personas. He used the name Bolverk when he went out to steal the mead of poetry, and there was a lot of blood-splatter and killing in the process.  The title of the album, “Uaar,” means a bad year in older Norwegian language. This was usually used when the crops failed and people starved. It fits well with the state of the world for the last two years.” The album contains eight tracks.

“Death the Whore” is the first cut. It begins with a heavy and aggressive sound of dissonant guitars and machine gun drumming. The vocals are harsh and done in both gutturals and shrieks. The basic sound here is Black Metal but there are also light Progressive elements. The title track opens with a slower-moving riff complete with thick bass notes and harrowing vocals. The song shifts through a few different meters and sounds along the way, but that Black Metal sound comes through pretty strong. “Time for Chaos” is a meatier offering of thick, overgrown guitars and vocals. It’s time for chaos, indeed. It slows with the advent of guttural vocals and some guitar dexterity, and picks back up stronger through the end.

“Svovelpredikant” opens with a more traditional riff and some chugging bass guitar notes. Take a careful listen to the meter here, it will fuck with your sense of timing. The dissonant guitar riffs are also quite complicated. “Secterian Bloodshed” begins with a slow and heavy groove, plodding away through desolate elements. Suddenly, it picks up with a fast-picked section complete with thunderous drumming and heavy bass work. A featured drum solo? Why not, it works well. “Prevail in Silence” begins with more heavy and intricate guitar work, and I love that you can hear the bass notes in the mix. They are often mixed out in the genre. The slowed down parts allow at least a little melody in, but not to the extent that the band described in their biography. “Bride of Christ” opens with a slow, melancholy sound and steady drum beats, and the vocals are both expressive and emotional. It changes suddenly to thick guitars and vocal shrieks. The level of dissonance increases a bit. Clean vocals come in at the chorus.

“From the Depths” closes the album. Following a brief intro, the bass kicks down the door and ushers in a hastier sound. Sprinting towards the end, the punishing sound clears all in its path. Overall, this was a pretty solid album, but not without some growth potential. Perhaps the biggest glare was the lack of a lot of melody, which the band mentioned above. There was a little, but it was foreshadowed by the more aggressive elements. If the band can allow these to come through stronger, this could have been a better effort, because their musicianship was strong indeed. I will definitely look forward to future releases from the band.

Songwriting: 6
Musicianship: 8
Memorability: 6
Production: 7

3 Star Rating

Tracklist:
1. Death the Whore
2. Uaar
3. Time for Chaos
4. Svovelpredikant
5. Secterian Bloodshed
6. Prevail in Silence
7. Bride of Christ
8. From the Depths
Lineup:
Christopher “Rammr” Rakkestad
Lucass Edquist
Bjørn “Narrenschiff” Holter
Thomas Bolverk
Record Label: WormHoleDeath Productions
     


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