Ereb Altor

Isole – Anesidora Review

Isole – Anesidora Review

Isole have slowly but inexorably become one of my favorite doom bands over the last 10 years, reliably delivering big albums in the Candlemass, Solitude Aeturnus, While Heaven Wept tradition. With 2 of those 3 big acts now out of action, Isole have steadily ascended the doom hierarchy ladder as they continued to improve with time.” Doom to improve.

Crom – The Era of Darkness Review

Crom – The Era of Darkness Review

CROM! I have not heard from you these many long years. I was completely blown away by 2008s Vengeance with its slick blend of epic Bathory-isms and power metal leanings, and I pledged my sword to your service. I was, however, somewhat disillusioned by 2011s Of Love and Death and its dialed-down might and majesty. I confess to being a lowly heretic and completely missing the gospel of the 2017 followup, and I need to make amends for my unholy ignorance. Now we come to the rather unexpected release of the fourth testament to all things Wotan, warrior-esque and wengeancy, The Era of Darkness.” Feel the steel.

Darkest Era – Wither on the Vine Review

Darkest Era – Wither on the Vine Review

“Talk about making fans wait for a new album. Way, way back in 2014 I was gobsmacked by Severance, the sophomore release by Irish epic doom act Darkest Era. It had a near-perfect blend of doom, black, goth and Viking genres and felt like a heavy-duty emotional journey through dark, trying times. It stitched together the best parts of Primordial, Atlantean Kodex, Ereb Altor, and Iron Maiden to create an album grander than the sum of its parts. There was a brooding, melancholic beauty and power to it that few albums could equal. I was very anxious to get a followup, and nearly 8 long years later, it finally shows up.” Dark days.

Ereb Altor – Vargtimman Review

Ereb Altor – Vargtimman Review

Bathory was a touchstone act for multiple metal genres, and though Quorthon has been gone since 2004, his influence still looms large in black and Viking metal. No more proof of this is needed than the 12-year career of Sweden’s Ereb Altor. Their entire output is heavily referential to classic Bathory albums like Hammerheart and Twilight of the Gods and the spirit of mighty Quorthon is never far from their writing. Vargtimman is their eighth platter of classic Bathorycore, and very little is left to chance.” Oversized swords, blackened hordes.

Cross Vault – As Strangers We Depart Review

Cross Vault – As Strangers We Depart Review

“There are certain key words and taglines that all but guarantee your friendly stronghold Steel will seize a promo as his own, jealously guarding it from interlopers, pretenders and would-be promo usurpers. Putting “Viking doom” in your promo blurb alongside reference to Bathory is one such way to score a hard ticket to the iron reviewing table. Germany’s Cross Vault have been toiling away in relative obscurity since 2014, heavily influenced by acts like Warning and crafting downcast material that often feels like a follow up to that act’s monumental Watching from a Distance opus. By 2015 a heavier, more grandiose sound made an appearance alongside the Warning-isms, somewhat justifying Viking era Bathory comparisons. After 4 years of silence, third album As Strangers We Depart sees the band once again searching for that perfect blend of doom, gloom and epic sounds.” Doom n’ boom.

Megaton Sword – Blood Hails Steel – Steel Hails Fire Review

Megaton Sword – Blood Hails Steel – Steel Hails Fire Review

“Is that a Megaton Sword in your armor or are you just happy to see me? In trvth it is I who is happy to see Megaton Sword riding the tide of righteous battle on their debut full-length ode to all things edged and deadly. This Swiss cutthroat crew is carved from the same olde school stone as acts like Visigoth, Eternal Champion, and ageless legends like Cirith Ungol, and they deliver heroic tales of braver and medieval butchery on the excellently titled Blood Hails Steel – Steel Hails Fire.” Big iron.

Ereb Altor РJärtecken Review

Ereb Altor РJärtecken Review

“If you found a younger version of me anytime from 1991 to about 2013, and asked past me how many albums I wanted to hear similar to Bathory’s mighty Hammerheart release, I would grab you by the throat and scream “ALL OF THEM!” before running into the night to pillage and sack the sackable. The sound and atmosphere of Bathory’s monsterwork was so damn trve, mighty, and metal, how could anyone grow tired of it? Around 2013 however, I did start to grow tired of the style, because so many of the bands attempting it lacked the charisma and gravitas to pull it off properly.” Hammer fail?

Isole – Dystopia Review

Isole – Dystopia Review

“As an inveterate doom fiend, I’m forever skulking the dank, darkened catacombs of Castle AMG, hunting for the next heartbreaking slab o’ crushing riffs and soul killing melodies. Thus far 2019 has offered up very little to slake my insatiable hunger for sadboi feelz and towering riff landfills. Because of this blight I had Isole brightly highlighted on my release calendar in red hot salmon, as they’ve been a highly reliable epic and regal doom outfit over the years.” I came, Isole, I conquered.

Sons of Crom – The Black Tower Review

Sons of Crom – The Black Tower Review

“The AMG promo sump is a murky, fetid cesspool, and you don’t always find exactly what you expected when delving into its brackish, primordial ooze. Swedish two-man band Sons of Crom were clearly labelled as “epic heavy metal” by some AMG toadie, which to my mind conjures images of Atlantean Kodex and triggers my involuntary salivation reflex. The band’s second full-length, The Black Tower is many things, with epic being one of them, but they’re quite far afield from what I was expecting.” From sump to summit.

Ereb Altor – Ulfven Review

Ereb Altor – Ulfven Review

Ereb Altor is a band I’ve reviewed more than almost any other since joining the AMG metal collective in 2010. They’re a prolific bunch and stick to a regular release schedule despite also releasing albums under the moniker Isole, and their material is consistently good if not great. Ulfven is their newest release, following 2016s Blot Ilt Taut which was a series of Bathory covers. This was appropriate as Quorthon has always been the wellspring from which the band draws their inspiration.” Reforge the sword.