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Ormskrik - Ormskrik Award winner

by Kevin Lewis at 13 July 2020, 5:53 PM

ORMSKRIK is a Norwegian band, formed in 2015 by a group of teenagers. After releasing a few singles in the past few years, their eponymous debut finally arrived on June 5, 2020, issued by Fysisk Format. Two of the previously released singles are on this album, put out to generate interest and get the band some exposure. “Ormskrik” is an impressive record from a young, new band looking to make an impact.

Starting with the lead off track, “Occultness”, the band launches straight in to their typical sound. With two guitars running wild, a bass track that does not stay hidden under the main riff and a rapid-fire drum beat that includes killer fills and blast beats, this is an excellent beginning. With nary a clean vocal to be found on this album, expect the vocals to take talent to figure out, which fans of the blackened thrash genre will just call “challenge accepted”.

Track two, “Destroyer Of Worlds” is almost six minutes. The really interesting thing about it is the interlude starting just over two minutes in that slows the pace down and shows a more melodic side this band is capable of performing. Do not worry, though, the song kicks back in and races to an awesome finish. Synched up guitars prevail for most of the song, but they do split off and we get some pretty cool solo work. Highlighting more of the melodic skills is the instrumental track “Vegen Til”, clocking in at just over one minute and never venturing away from the light lilt. You might not think this very “thrashy”, but it sits well in the midst of all the power on display on the rest of the record.

Ramping back up from the little break we get with the instrumental, “Helheim” again is initiated with a brutal scream and a twin guitar assault that rivals the sound of 40 racecars taking off at the waving of the green flag. After a couple more tracks, we get to the final cut from the record, a near eight-minute giant of a song called “Eye For An Eye”. Here is another song that shows off the variable skills of this group. Here is another song with an interlude beginning halfway through. The song ramps back up to 75% power, then drops off to end the album on a gentle tone. Bands that have been doing this for 20+ years struggle with fadeouts like that. This one is nailed.

Overall, ORMSKRIK is a very impressive group, especially considering their age. Each instrument and musician have a chance to shine on this record. The bass and drums don’t hide in the background and the guitars work well together and on their own through solos and offshoot times when they just run amok and slay. They have the enthusiasm of youth but the skill of seasoned veterans. This may be partially attributed to having a great crew working on the disc, including their mixer, who has worked with the likes of MESHUGGAH, BEHEMOTH, and IN FLAMES. With a heritage like that, it’s no wonder these guys are starting out strong!

Songwriting:  8
Musicianship:  10
Memorability:  9
Production:  10

4 Star Rating

1. Occultness
2. Destroyer Of Worlds
3. Oblation
4. March Of The Dead
5. Descend To Madness
6. Deathwind
7. Vegen Til
8. Helheim
9. The Morbid arrives
10. Hecatomb
11. Eye For An Eye
Gjøran Bårdsen – Vocals
Erik Bakke – Bass
Kristoffer Fikstvedt – Drums
Anders Skjæveland – Guitar
Tormod Hansen – Guitar
Record Label: Fysisk Format


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