Danish metal staple, Angantyr comes ripping in at the end of 2012 with his new offering Forvist on Northern Silence Productions. With sole member Ynelborgas’ straight ahead, no frills approach to black metal it is clear that Angantyr are not messing around with a proven formula. Let us delve once again into the enveloping darkness known as one man metal.
From the opening track “Lænket” we are presented with some cliché wave sounds and a harrowing acoustic guitar passage which then transforms into an icy, northern blast from the nether regions with heavy, pulsing riffs, incessant blasting drums as well as insane, snarling vocals. This really sets the tone for the chaos that will transpire on this album. “Fjelles Fende” is an intriguing track as it gallops along in a pseudo, punk-like fashion. This one will certainly get you nodding that head in agreement of it’s superiority. Towards the end of the song, there is a transition to what could be dubbed a funeral march drum beat and finally the climax completed in an epic manner.
The top shelf tracks don’t stop there as “Skovens Enge Vaben” is a no nonsense continued minimalist approach to the black metal aesthetic. No frills, vamping or gimmicks here, just brooding, straight to the point tremolo riff madness. Though the formula may turn a bit stale at times like on “I Forfædres Fodspar”, even the repetition is enough to garner some attention. Honestly this is the tried and true method that has sustained this metal machine all these years. “Vemods Hjemstavn” is also a decent track that almost suffers from repetitive stress disorder, but is saved by a timely change towards the latter part of the song.
The title track “Forvist” contains a killer intro/bridge riff that should grab your attention. This is fleeting however as the main riff leaves something to be desired and comes up a bit flat. This is in stark contrast to what otherwise could have been an outstanding track. Really this is the only track that does not seem to be on par with the rest of the album and somewhat surprising being the title track. This one misstep should not deter even those only mildly interested in checking it out.
One of my favorite aspects about Angantyr is that Ynelborgas handles all of the instrument duties. This is extremely commendable and the end result is stupefying. Forvist is without a doubt an exceptional album worth several spins especially if you are familiar with his previous efforts. The album misses the mark in only a few spots and takes some bad turns, but in the end it is a trip worth taking. If you know Angantyr, you understand already and if not it’s time to quickly get acquainted.