Heathen Foray
The Passage


4.0
excellent

Review

by lobby USER (14 Reviews)
May 24th, 2009 | 35 replies | 5,199 views


Release Date: 2009 | Tracklist

Review Summary: Slam down a mead and sing along, because it’s 2009 and the Viking spirit lives on

Blindfolded, you amble along a snow-sprayed desolate mountain range, relying on the least developed of your senses to stab your beaten body through the unforgiving wrath of a November’s wind. Wife? Dead. Children? Dead. Village? Burned. Heathen Foray’s latest was never expected to make a mockery of you like this. But that’s too damn bad, ‘cause for the rest of us Germanic savage bastards, we’re all about to die and go to seventh heathen.

Sagas and Slania pretty much tranquillised the 2008 Folk Metal tension that brewed within Folk metal-heads. 2009 rolls in and we are greeted with a few tempting offerings from bands such as Finsterforst, Suidakra and Hammer Horde. But up until now, nothing has really hit the spot, like the latest from Austrian Folk Metal group, Heathen Foray. The debutante’s contribution is more than we could expect, as a barrelful of hammer-strikes rain down to the groping fingers of the Folk Metal crowd. Slam down a mead and sing along, because it’s 2009 and the Viking spirit lives on.

Heathen Foray slapped together a line-up from various small-time bands and then solidified the act so they could record their debut effort, The Passage. This Austrian outfit have walked a tight path as they release a so-called “Folk/Viking Metal” album without incorporating any of the esoteric instruments that have woven the foundations of the Folk Metal sound. No keyboards. No violins. No flutes. No didgeridoos (Aussie Folk Metal ftw). Although, fear not; the Folk influence is there - minus the Folk appliances. Fading Tree initiates the adventure with a simple melodious riff which exposes into a blast of tight drumming and ferocious guitar leads. Vocals saunter onto the scene with a gruff, “Hail!” The epic journey has started. There is no denying these guys are playing Melodic Death Metal. But with insanely catchy hooks and riffs, which sound very Folkish for most of the time, and the beastly output from the vocalist whom professes about all things heathen and hedonistic, there is little doubt that the music we hear is the compelling progression of a race built on piracy, thievery, and violence, cultivated in a way only known to the 21st century.

With such melodious riffage, and easy listening for one-spinners, this album is tough to condemn. Choruses provide the pinnacle vocal exhibits for many of the tracks, with beauties on Wolkenbruch, Theatre of Battle and Winterking. Although, it is the to-ing and fro-ing of melodic guitars which points to The Passage’s shining star. The speedy delivery is enjoyable and appreciable on the first listen with no track losing mood or momentum. Chants is a simple telling of a man’s infallible vengeance laced with fast-paced solos and drumming sleight of superb speed and style. It starts with a pointless acoustic piece which segues into the riffs that inspires neck muscles to thrash about like Erik the Red’s celebratory bedroom antics. Luckily, the acoustic guitar was laid to rest from there on in, with the band opting for tremendous melodic hooks to introduce the listener to the Viking turmoil that they had created. Ancient Secrets, with a galloping charge, is such a track that blasts listeners with guitar trickery from the get-go, as if Amon Amarth influences had burned their way through countless villages to break into the studio. Parallels with the popular Melodeath/Viking band are evident but with the merry feeling that sits in your gut when you listen to this, it is easily forgiven that originality is a plausible flaw.

Sonic standouts include the opener, Chants, Theatre of Battle and Wolkenbruch. With such a simple formula it easy to overlook these chimney-sweepers as the amphetamine-charged little brother of its influences, but with an easy approach and a spare 45 minutes, The Passage will have you chanting out the words, and pretty soon you’ll be replacing insults like “idiot” with “cannon fodder”. Hail Thor.

Heathen Foray’s “The Passage” is out April 24, 2009 via Black Bards Entertainment



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user ratings (11)
Chart.
3.2
good

Comments:Add a Comment 
devsol
May 24th 2009


347 Comments


probably sucks

lobby
May 24th 2009


1251 Comments

Album Rating: 2.0

lol...you're the guy who hates Wintersun, right? Yeah, you're right...it's gonna suck...

devsol
May 24th 2009


347 Comments


yeah i'm the guy

CkCk
May 24th 2009


141 Comments


yeah what the fuck of it?



devsol
May 24th 2009


347 Comments


have you even HEARD the stray cars of QOTSA?

CkCk
May 24th 2009


141 Comments


worse day of my life

CkCk
May 24th 2009


141 Comments


but 4serious this album sounds like crap oh whoa viking shit havent heard that before

devsol
May 24th 2009


347 Comments


Blindfolded, you amble along a snow-sprayed desolate mountain range, relying on the least developed of your senses to stab your beaten body through the unforgiving wrath of a November’s wind. Wife? Dead. Children? Dead. Village? Burned.
Wife? Dead. Children? Dead. Village? Burned
Wife?Dead.
Children?Dead.
Village? Burned

CkCk
May 24th 2009


141 Comments


somethings money cant buy but for everything else theres mastercard

devsol
May 24th 2009


347 Comments


devsol more like live forever in heaven with jesus christ

CkCk
May 24th 2009


141 Comments


my dick just bent backwards

devsol
May 24th 2009


347 Comments


lobby more like gobby

CkCk
May 24th 2009


141 Comments


gobs of nobs more like it

lobby
May 24th 2009


1251 Comments

Album Rating: 2.0

lol....oh sooooorrrryyy is I try to add a bit of narrative to my review. I'm not going to reason with you because I know your a stubborn asshole. Please someone mature make a comment....

Fine, don't like viking melodeath, CkCk, no need to be a smartass...

devsol
May 24th 2009


347 Comments


narrative to your review is fine if it doesn't suck a lot of dicks

CkCk
May 24th 2009


141 Comments


is lobby gonna sobby?


wa wa wuh wuh

lobby
May 24th 2009


1251 Comments

Album Rating: 2.0

yeah, I'm gonna sobby...

edit: thank-you benzum...

devsol
May 24th 2009


347 Comments


sobby all over my wobbly bobbly gobby pumper

BallsToTheWall
May 24th 2009


44314 Comments


Bunch of little bitches. Kickass review, the enw Hammer Horde is pretty Balls. I will acquire this, you can't have enough viking metal tbh.

Digging: Tiamat - Clouds

Zoo
May 24th 2009


3759 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5

This album is pretty weak. Nothing special from the start and what is actually good gets old very quickly.



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