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Tyr - Valkyrja Award winner

Tyr
Valkyrja
by Lex Mishukhin at 02 September 2013, 4:01 PM

TYR are unique to say the least, while generally referred to as Folk Metal, they never really fit the bill. It's enough to listen to their debut "How Far to Asgard" to realize that this band is in a league of its own, there are in fact few truly folk elements in their music, the band utilizes the classic Metal line up of Bass / Drums / Twin Guitars / Vocals, notice there are no keyboards, accordions or flutes. They often sing in their native Faroese, one of the few still existing languages that are said to have deep roots in the Nordic languages of yore, so these guys are as Viking Metal as it gets. They are also unusual when you consider Heri Joensen's vocal style, while most vocalists of their genre choose growling, or at the very least harsh vocal styles, Joensen chose a clean melodic style, but again, I already said this band is unusual. I've known this band for about a decade now, and they've never failed to fascinate me, and their Metal Blade Records’ debut "Valkkyrja" is no exception.

With each consecutive album TYR manage to evolve; always keeping a straight line while simultaneously changing and never becoming boring, adding new elements to their already established sound, elements of Doom, Thrash and Power Metal have all graced their albums. Their 7th full length begins with a fast almost Power Metal track "Blood of Heroes", its truly a perfect and quick beginning to welcome us to the journey ahead which continues with the awesomely melodic yet heavy "Mare of My Night". "The Lay of Our Love" provides us with a glimpse of the softer side of the Faroese Vikings, thanks in part to guest vocalist Liv Kristine (LEAVES EYES), a wonderful ballad which is quickly catches your ear accompanied by the incredible guitar work TYR are so well known for. "Grindavísan" is another track to look out for, grandiose and melodic, sung in Faroese showcasing TYR at their finest.

Apart from an incredible album of original material, TYR also give us two covers on this record, the first of which is "Where Eagles Dare" taken from IRON MAIDEN's masterpiece “Piece Of Mind”, a fantastic and energetic cover not falling from the original. But the cover that you should truly go out of your way to hear, is the truly incredible version of PANTERA's classic “Cemetery Gates", I generally hate PANTERA covers, few can get it right, and I do tend to get pissed if someone screws with such great masterpieces, luckily TYR did an absolutely amazing job on the cover, and while the guitar work is absolutely incredible what truly caught me were Joensen's vocals, and yes, he did get the final notes perfectly.

This album has quickly become one of my top three albums of 2013, just the cover of "Cemetery Gates" is worth the price of the CD / LP alone, but more so, this album once again proves that TYR is one of the finest Metal bands working today!

5 Star Rating

Tracklist:
1. Blood of Heroes
2. Mare of My Night
3. Hel Hath No Fury
4. The Lay of Our Love
5. Nation
6. Another Fallen Brother1
7. Grindavísan
8. Into the Sky
9. Fánar Burtur Brandaljóð
10. Lady of the Slain
11. Valkyrja
12. Where Eagles Dare (Iron Maiden Cover)
13. Cemetery Gates (Pantera Cover)
Lineup:
Heri Joensen – Vocals / Guitar
Terji Skibenæs – Guitar
Gunnar Thomsen – Bass
George Kollias – Drums
Record Label: Metal Blade Records
     


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