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Under the Oak - Ripped up by the Roots

Under the Oak
Ripped up by the Roots
by John Foley at 16 November 2020, 9:29 AM

Tearing up the Norway metal scene since 2017 we have the new album from UNDER THE OAK titled Ripped up by the Roots released back in September 2020. This is a band that wear their influences like a badge of honour by even covering a few of their favourite bands songs for their live shows. But its UNDER THE OAKS own music that really packs a punch. Kicking things off we have the opening song “Tribulation”, and right from the start the band are hammering down the riffs. With a song like this the band are commanding the listener to take notice and the song is a real mosh pit starter. You can really hear their influences right from the start and towards the end, even with that double bass drum outro.

Next up we have “Chaos in the Pit” which seems to be the big hit single from the album. The band do sound on top form here. The song is filled the catchy riffs to bang your head to. Even while listening to this one you can picture the circle pits opening up. After that one we get “Hymn for the Fallen”. This song starts of very heavy but then half way through the song switches to a very melodic section, then to a heavy thrash section. It goes back and forth between these two polarizing sections while still making it all fit in nicely into the feel of the song as it goes back into the sound we had from the start to end out the track.

We also get a song like “The Fountain” that has a very pirate and viking feel to it, which makes for a fun listen. Then there is a song like “War of Attrition” which is a track that plays like a battle cry and also with a killer guitar solo. With a band with a bad ass thrash metal sound you wouldn’t expect to find a song titled “Butterflies & Unicorns”, but don’t let the title fool you, the band are not going soft as this song really packs a punch. It’s one of those songs that really makes you want to bang your head along to it. Some haunting melodies between all the killer riffing makes this a tune worth checking out.

With “Terror & Violence” the band are going out with a bang. The band comes crashing down on you with their heavy music and thunders along. Some great lead guitar work through-out gives this track a very epic feel to it. Filled with a shout along chorus and great guitar solo to lead us out. As a bonus Ripped up by the Roots also includes two cover songs to match the bands live shows. The first one is “Solitude” by CANDLEMASS. This one really captures the spirit of the original but with UNDER THE OAK’s own twist on it. The second cover is “Pounding Metal” by EXCITER. This one keeps the feel of the original but adds more of a punch to it.

From listening to Ripped up by the Roots, UNDER THE OAK has a real classic thrash metal sound to them. The vocals remind me a little of Tom Araya from SLAYER with a hint of Rob Halford from JUDAS PRIEST. The songs here on the album sound like they would be great mosh pit starters for a live show. It’s filled with pounding guitar riffs and a rhythm section to match. The album is mostly a thrash metal sound but through-out you can often here other genres of metal thrown in to fill out their sound which just shows how the band are having a fun time with making music.

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

4 Star Rating

1. Tribulation
2. Chaos in the Pit
3. Hymn for the Fallen
4.  The Fountain
5. War of Attrition
6. Total Human Destruction
7. Turned into Leaves
8. Wrath of Nature
9. Butterflies & Unicorns
10. Terror & Violence
11. Solitude (CANDLEMASS Cover)
12. Pounding Metal (EXCITER Cover)
Jostein Sandaker – Vocals
Thomas Hansen – Guitar
Marius Paulsberg Vedal – Drums
Steinar Jørgensen – Bass
Record Label: Wormholdeath Productions


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Edited 01 February 2023

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