Amon Amarth
With Oden on Our Side


4.5
superb

Review

by Epsilon USER (2 Reviews)
October 4th, 2006 | 21 replies


Release Date: 2006 | Tracklist

Review Summary: Amon Amarth is a Melodic Death Viking themed band. With each release their skills are only more enhanced, their latest release With Oden On Our Side shows them going outside their own boundaries while also maintaining the essence which is Amon Amar

With Oden On Our Side is Amon Amarth's sixth full-length release and by far is their finest work. The change in their music is quite significant, but you will not be disappointed with their efforts.

The album opens with the formidable Valhall Awaits Me, now for all you Norse mythology uneducated people Valhall is where honourable warriors are sent after they die in battle. The song opens with paced slow heavy guitar chugs, synced with a drum beat. A few seconds go by then the double bass kicks in followed by a drum roll, then WHAM the heavy riff is going, very fast with a hint of melody. Johans vocals have improved since Fate Of Norns and a good example of this is shown in the chorus, slightly melodic, but don't worry people he doesn't use clean vocals, the chorus ends nicely with "Valhall awaits me, when I die. A very astonishing solo with the drums backing it up nicely, you can really feel the bass drums. Overall great opener for the album.

Runes To My Memory comes next, this is one of the more emotional songs, and is also the first one they made a video for. This opens with a quickly paced riff and swiftly goes into the verse with Johans vocals starting straight away backed up by a consistent guitar line which sounds great. The chorus is where you really feel the emotion, very melodic along with the desperation in Johans voice. Now this song tells a story of a warrior who has fallen in battle and wants him to remain in everyone’s memory thus comes the ending lines, which are also in the chorus "When I am dead, Lay me in a mound, Raise a stone for all to see, Runes carved to my memory". No solo is featured in this song, but this is still very amazing and one of my personal favourites.

The next track, Asator is pure death metal. As soon as the song begins it’s just a completely insane guitar riff backed up by intense drumming. Johan's vocals ensue which are also fast paced. Now it gets to the chorus quite quickly and damn does it sound awesome. You can feel the angst as "FIRE!" is screamed at the top of his lungs. My compliments go to Frederik whose drumming skill constantly amazes me throughout this song. Eventually this song gets to a break-down point where things are slowed down, giving you mercy from the intensity. None the less at this point of the song it sounds immensely head bang worthy. Just when you think the song is over WHAM! the insanely fast solo kicks in and trust me, for Amon Amarth it is fast! Well I have no idea what an Asator is, I looked it up everywhere and had no luck, but from what I have gathered from the lyrics I think this song represents Ragnarök which is basically the Norse mythological apocalypse. If you love insane death metal, you'll love this song.

A very interesting, epic song is next, Hermod's Ride To Hel - Lokes Treachery Part 1. The thing that makes this song so interesting is that it is sung from a persons experiences on his journey, Hermod's to be exact. Now not to get too deep into detail about what this story is, but basically Hermod, son of Oden, is given a mission to go to Hel (Norse Underworld) to retrieve his brother Baldr who was sent there after his death. The song begins with a singular clean guitar doing nice harmonic repeat, after this is done once, the second guitar comes in doing a simple heavy chug, along with the drum and bass. After this is repeated a few times, finally; the epic assortment of all this instruments in harmony is played, and I have to tell you, its completely amazing, one to be remembered. The simple yet intriguing verse starts, along with the tale of the Hermod and Hel. The way Johan takes the role of Hermod lyrically is very well wrote and executed. The thing that I found to be the most great is the part of the song where words are spoken between Hermod and Hel (Hel is also coincidently the name of the Ruler of Hel). The way it is pitched within the song is Hermod pleading for his brother's release in song, and Hel replies (Johan with voice effects, sounds very cool) in agreement and Baldr is set free. Overall this song is epic, amazing, MEGA! to put it simply, very enjoyable and memorable.

We get to the halfway point of the album, which is the track Gods Of War Arise. The song begins like a normal Amon Amarth one would, a slow guitar fling with a banging drum, then things are sped up forming into a nice sounding riff. I would class the music in this song as repetitive, but that’s not a bad thing, pay attention to the lyrics and it makes the experience a whole lot more worth while. This song tells the story of a small army of Viking soldiers attacking a village, more in depth to the lyrics you soon come to realise it symbolises the relentlessness of Vikings. This song doesn't have a chorus, but at about halfway through it takes a complete change and has some homage to [i]Victorious March[i] with the guitar in this part having similarities to the intro of it. This simple riff is soon backed up by another chugging guitar. The solo is total Amon Amarth, and you know they do it well. Overall good track, nothing too special though.

Next comes the title track [b]With Oden On Our Side[b]. This is the most inspiring song on the album. The introduction is completely awesome, with the mixture of melody and chugging riffs, it just sounds completely amazing. This song tells the story of men outnumbered in battle, but still they stand their ground and fight on, strongly enforcing the message "Never give up", I don't know how they do it, but the music just goes perfectly with the story. You will be head banging throughout this whole song, and you will feel everything that Amon Amarth intend you to, this song will make you feel good.

Now we have my personal overall favourite track Cry Of The Black Birds. From the introduction of this song you do not expect it to take the direction that it does, so very slow and weak, until it just explodes with Johan yelling "ATTACK!". Amazing drumming, guitar, hell every instrument is going at full capacity. Then we get to probably the most epic portion of the entire album, the extremely powerful chorus, you will be hooked immediately once you hear it, The guitars are doing insane speeds on single strings, the drums have immense intensity and along Johan's powerful vocals it just makes it all that much better. This song simply tells the story of men charging into battle with no fear. Completely amazing track! and my number one favourite on the album.

We get to the slow track of the album now, Under The Northern Star. Yes oh yes we have a slow track on this album, and as you all should know, Amon Amarth do it very well, with tracks like Avenger or Across The Rainbow Bridge. The song opens with a single string strum which slowly progresses until it gets to the main riff, and it sounds very cool indeed. Something you will notice in the song is Johan's vocals, they're much slower and growlier. The tale told in this melodic piece is that of a Man and his men, and their long painful journey home. The solo is definitely the standout on the album, Johan and Olavi both play it at the same time, but the sound of one is differently pitched, sounds quite beautiful so to speak.

The final track for this phenomenal album, Prediction Of Warfare. The intro is somewhat similar to that of Hermod's Ride To Hel - Lokes Treachery Part 1, with the addition of a drum beat. The intro does not progress, it just goes straight into the verse after it is repeated a few times. There's nothing too special about the verse, but still the story that is told is interesting as always, It a tale of a man who has boarded a boat along with his fellow soldiers who are on their way to battle, the night before the battle he sleeps and dreams of the things to come. This track also clocks in as the longest on the album at 6:36.

Track Ratings
Valhall Awaits Me - 4.5/5
Runes To My Memory - 5/5
Asator - 5/5
Hermod's Ride To Hel - Lokes Treachery Part 1 - 5/5
Gods Of War Arise - 4/5
With Oden On Our Side - 5/5
Cry Of The Black Birds - 5/5
Under The Northern Star - 4.5/5
Prediction Of Warfare - 4/5

In conclusion this is by far Amon Amarth's best release, and I’m sure that in the future they will only produce better and better albums.


user ratings (1182)
Chart.
4
excellent
other reviews of this album
myhigherpie (4)
Tits N' Mead m/(>_...

Jorn van Schaïk (4)
Melodic death metal without the cheese. And more death metal. And that is a good thing....

Dethtrasher (4.5)
The Vikings would've been proud if they where listening to this crushing metal album....

loathed (4)
Amon Amarth comes up with an excellent album, without changing much. Sticking to their melodic self,...


Comments:Add a Comment 
Epsilon
October 4th 2006


12 Comments


Ok hooray, first to review this great album, Oh yer ignore the summary part, that was an accident, if a mod could please delete that, greatly appreciated X)This Message Edited On 10.04.06

Tarantino's Tarantulas
October 4th 2006


819 Comments


Hooray for Vikings! Ive only heard Cry of the Black Birds and Runes To My Memory off this, but I like them both. Their lyrics are so terrible that theyre good. :lol:



loathed
October 4th 2006


174 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

good review...

i got this today, and i must say i like it. it rivals Insomunium's new release, but i dont think its as strong. but its still a good album.

expect a review soon...cheers
This Message Edited On 10.04.06

SCREAM!
October 4th 2006


10215 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

now for all you Norse mythology uneducated people Valhall is where honourable warriors are sent after they die in battle
Isn't it called Valhala?
Good review. I'll definately check this out

Shadows
Moderator
October 4th 2006


2530 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

I really like this album. They kept their epic feel and made it into something more melodic. Nice work with the review, it's good to see someone remembered Amon Amarth.

Mikesn
Emeritus
October 4th 2006


3709 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Excellent review.

Digging: Grimes - Visions

publicastration
October 4th 2006


57 Comments


Yeah I'm pretty sure it's "Valhalla" not Valhall.

Epsilon
October 4th 2006


12 Comments


Well I don't know if that was Amon's mistake or its just another way of saying it. Oh I also just found out, Asator is another name for Thor

Shadows
Moderator
October 4th 2006


2530 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

The word appears as "Valhall" on the album. And considering they're full blooded Scandinavians with an extensive knowledge of Norse history/mythology, I seriously doubt it was an error.

SCREAM!
October 4th 2006


10215 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

It might be both but i've ALWAYS seen it spelled Valhalla

Iluvatar
Staff Reviewer
October 4th 2006


16089 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

I'm pretty sure Valhalla is the bastardized english version of the word. I could be wrong, but I like to think I'm not.

publicastration
October 4th 2006


57 Comments


Found this.

"Valhalla is a 19th century English mistranslation of the singular Valhöll into a genitival plural form. A more literally-correct English translation is Val-hall, but Valhalla is by far the more common form in general use."

So there's no errors, it's just a correct translation.

Epsilon
October 6th 2006


12 Comments


Haha, people enough on Valhall/Valhalla already, back to the review/album

Metalllifuk
October 17th 2006


2 Comments


Heck of a review man! ;) Cheers to ya!

I see that you've got some difficulty in translating the title "Asator".
I'm thought I would explain this to you, since I'm a swede myself, and" "asar" is an old swedish word for "gods" and of course "Tor" is the word for Thor, the thundergod (as "explained" in the song).

I can't really find a good translation of the word "Asator" but it is the word that implicates that Thor is a God...

I just thought I should help you with this. Again, great job with the review, man!

AWESOME!!! ;)


Metalllifuk
October 17th 2006


2 Comments


And, oh, Valhall is the correct way to say the word... Valhalla is the english version.

Now I won't bother you anymore, hehe! have a good one, guys! ;)

Intransit
January 2nd 2007


2797 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0 | Sound Off

This album sort of owns something fierce

Eakflanderyof
January 2nd 2007


2143 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

This is an awesome album. I bought this album thinking that it would be good, but not great. Man was I surprised. This album owns. It's nothing too technical, but they can just write some awesome, epic riffs.

Good Review.

freudianslipknot
January 16th 2007


803 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Very good review. Right on the money. Cry of the black birds is great. I am really enjoying Amon Amarth at the moment. I can listen to them album after album - their sound is awesome and their song writing is so consistent.This Message Edited On 01.16.07

south_of_heaven 11
January 19th 2007


5436 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Gods of War Arise pwns the sh*t out of everything on here, except maybe Cry of the Black Birds

krazytom
November 8th 2007


123 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

i really love these guys. They just keep getting more and more badass. Im seeing them for the 3rd time in december, last time i was in the pit with Johan during Children of Bodom's set and met him after the show, he signed my ticket and we talked about viking mythology, that was probly the best day ever. This is definately their best album yet

Digging: Bob Marley and The Wailers - Burnin'



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