Ulver
Bergtatt


5.0
classic

Review

by BathoryHordes USER (4 Reviews)
June 4th, 2010 | 36 replies | 4,744 views


Release Date: 1995 | Tracklist


6 of 7 thought this review was well written

I remember staying at my grandfather's place in the Swedish woods of northern Värmland. He was a bit old fashion and had bought an old wooden cabin to spend time in at summertime, he was very close to nature. The place was situated on a mountaintop that was surrounded by higher mountains and endless forests and as I looked to the sky, sitting on the porch, there was a mountain that was overshadowed by the setting sun and was given a kind of dark, purplish color. Some years later I picked this album up and I'll be damned if the artwork didn't look exactly like that one mountaintop. I got interested and gave it a listen.

Being Swedish and into extreme metal, there is a certain kind of bond between the Scandinavian released and myself as a Swedish listener. It becomes personal somehow. I grew up in mountains and forests, typical Swedish landscapes and heard plenty of Norse urban legends and such, but as a teenager, trolls, elves and huldras aren't cool. But I never let the love for Scandinavian folklore go, I would always find interest in paintings by Kittelsen and Bauer and as a dedicated metalhead I instantly fell in love with this album.
It just felt right, it felt like there actually were some people that shared my love for this stuff and it got people's attention with the exciting exotic Scandinavian atmosphere.
Ulver is that kind of band, a band that catches people's attention because of the exotic Scandinavian atmosphere they so naturally create. Bergtatt is truly a masterwork, but the thing is that it was probably the easiest thing for Garm and the other people involved to write because they had lived in that atmosphere they wanted to create for their whole lives, they weren't faking it.

No signs of musical aggression in the first chapter, introduced my a simple drum fill and guitars that consists of chords with a Nordic feel to it, followed by Garm's opera like clean singing. It is a concept album and Garm naturally takes on the duty as the storyteller and thus sings like he was telling the listener a story, inviting us to take part of the tale. Followed by chapter two which is introduced by an acoustic guitar and a flute playing scales often used in Scandinavian folk music and then exploding into a violent 2 beat and distorted guitars that delivers brutality as well as beauty. This is the first signs of Black metal on the record, the vocals perfectly balances guttural roars with clean singing. The same progression is made on chapter three, which is probably my favorite track off the album because of the sense of panic and fear that is tied in with the part of the story where the woman is feeling watched by the creatures of the forest. It breaks into an acoustic part followed by the sounds of the woman running from the trolls, which is a very dramatic moment. Chapter four is probably the most folky track on the album, consisting of an acoustic guitar and vocals only and though creating excellent atmosphere, it is a bit uninteresting. The female vocals are really haunting. The final chapter portrays how the woman is finally taken by the mountain and mixes all of the elements of the past chapters, closing the album.

This is how music is supposed to be - original, exciting and artistic. It's a true classic and portrays Scandinavian folklore perfectly. In the end it is really just another metal album, but it seems that Ulver was focusing on the conceptual, progressing storytelling with metal music portraying it. It is an honest act.


user ratings (1010)
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Comments:Add a Comment 
BathoryHordes
June 4th 2010



35 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

I thought the easiest thing for a fairly inexperienced writer to review at first would be a familiar album and I'm aware of the fact that other people has reviewed it, this one is just to get into writing reviews at first.
I was told that the forum at Sputnikmusic could sometimes be pretty brutally criticizing. I'm new around here, so feel free to rip the review apart haha.

FadeToBlack
June 4th 2010



10913 Comments


every review is a 5... as it should be :P

qwe3
June 4th 2010



21353 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

this album rules so hard

Prolapse
June 4th 2010



4370 Comments


Been trying to get into this album for some time, but i just can't

FadeToBlack
June 4th 2010



10913 Comments


in the second paragraphy, those two random gaps in the middle look silly; either get rid of them or sepearte them into paragraphs

BathoryHordes
June 4th 2010



35 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

Yes, I didn't want to rate it 5 because every other reviewer had, but I just couldn't think of a reason to why I should, haha.

BathoryHordes
June 4th 2010



35 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

Thanks, I'd rather keep it as it is to learn what not to do.

eggsvonsatan
June 4th 2010



1087 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

You need some more description to tell us about why you think this album is such a classic. Talk about the instrumentation in detail, what about those instruments makes this such a classic?

eggsvonsatan
June 4th 2010



1087 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

Also, the introduction is as long as your description of the album. Not good.

TheSpirit
June 4th 2010



17184 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

No signs of musical aggression in the first chapter, introduced my a simple drum fill and guitars that consists of chords with a Nordic feel to it, followed by Garm's opera like clean singing





by

Digging: vhmnt / blsphm - vhmnt / blsphm

TheSpirit
June 4th 2010



17184 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

This is the first signs of Black metal on the record, the vocals perfectly balances guttural roars with clean singing.



Black shouldn't be capitilized. Strangely as it is, genre names are adjectives (idk why) so they are ALWAYS lowercase. And Garm doesn't usual gutturals.




Hawks
June 4th 2010



34580 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

Been trying to get into this album for some time, but i just can't

Are you gay or something?

Digging: Equilibrium - Erdentempel

SCREAM!
June 4th 2010



9977 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

What everyone said basically. Still a solid first review so ill give you a pos for that.

And most black metal don't use gutturals, those are more usually found in death metal. THese are jsut screams.

Digging: Agalloch - The Serpent and the Sphere

Lucid
Contributing Reviewer
June 4th 2010



7021 Comments


like there weren't enough 5 reviews

Digging: Shabazz Palaces - Lese Majesty

BathoryHordes
June 4th 2010



35 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

Thanks guys, I'll save the advices for next time.

jingledeath
June 4th 2010



7104 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

band sucks

Shredzilla
June 4th 2010



501 Comments


Definitely an amazing album. The random clap of thunder in "Braablick Blev Hun Vaer" alwayd cracks me up. I don't know why, it's just so friggin' hilarious sounding and over-dramatic.

Bfhurricane
June 4th 2010



6194 Comments


Good review for a first. Spend some more time on the music, your third paragraph is a good paraphrase but could definitely be expanded upon. Loved your opening... I'd love to go to northern Scandanavia sometime to experience it's unique nature.

BathoryHordes
June 4th 2010



35 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

Thank you very much, I thought it might have been a bit too deep, but I'm glad you liked it!

BallsToTheWall
June 4th 2010



44164 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

"I remember staying at my grandfather's place in the Swedish woods of northern Värmland."

Yeah, im jealous.



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