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Borknagar
Winter Thrice
Type: CD
Company: Century Media
Release: 2016
Genre: Black
Reviewer: Greg Watson
Published: 7/24/2016
Incredible mix of progressively aggressive metal
Norwegian progressive blackened band Borknagar have been creating incredibly atmospheric music for almost 20 years now. 'Winter Thrice' is the band's tenth album and the second which features both ICS Vortex and Vintersorg sharing vocal duties. The duality of Vintersorg's harsher vocals with Vortex's clean vocals is quite amazing and gets even better when Vintersorg throws in his clean vocals. Continuing with the duality theme, musically 'Winter Thrice' continues with the pairing of a very clean, progressive sound melded with black metal creating an incredible mix of progressively aggressive metal. Founder Oystein G. Brun and Jens F. Ryland provide a wonderful mix of soaring, melodious guitar lines with scorching and heavier riffs, giving the music a dynamic and rich sound. This album has a few tracks that add a little new flavor here and there. The folky tinged "Panorama" has a more organic feel while piano gives way to "When Chaos Calls", a highlight of the record that is veiled and surrounded by a very progressive interlude before returning back to the depths of black metal. The only slight gripe that I have with it is it seems a little redundant when compared to 2012's 'Urd' both musically and vocally. I feel like songs from either album could be transposed and would fit equally together. Whether this was intentional or just pure accident, the repetitiveness of the songs tends to fizzle out a little bit rather than maintaining the focus and fire. But all that being said, 'Winter Thrice' is still a really solid album and is what Borknagar fans have come to expect. They definitely don't disappoint.
About this Writer:
Greg Watson // Greg Watson has been hooked on the loud and heavy sounds since the summer of 1994 when he first heard the opening notes of "Operation: Mindcrime" by Queensryche. Since then his tastes have expanded and grown like the ever evolving heavy metal tree of genres. He has been an active member of Maximum Metal off and on for 10 years. In his spare time, Greg enjoys deciding the fate of his loyal subjects in the realm of Skyrim and secretly playing air keyboard to "Separate Ways" by Journey when no one is watching. He currently resides in Roanoke, VA with his wife and his metal wannabe beagle.

Maximum Metal Rating Legend - Click for Full Details
5 Excellent - Buy it and say a prayer to the metal gods that you were tuned on to this masterpiece. A classic.
4-4.5 Great - Almost perfect records but there's probably a clunker or a lacking somewhere to keep it from perfection. You won't feel bad about dropping some bones on these.
3.5 Good - Most of the record is good, but there may be some filler. This is the OK range where you'd search for the record on sale or used.
3 Average - Some good songs, some bad ones at about a half/half ratio. Could show skills but be dull overall. Redeeming qualities for indy bands are effort and passion. Majors that don't try or suck outright end up here.
2-2.5 Fair - Worth a listen, but best obtained by collectors. There is much better metal out there.
1-1.5 Bad - Major problems with music, lyrics, production, etc.
0 Terrible or an otherwise waste of your life and time.

Note: Reviews are graded from 0-5, anything higher or not showing is from our old style. Scores, however, do not reveal the important features. The written review that accompanies the ratings is the best source of information regarding the music on our site. Reviewing is opinionated, not a qualitative science, so scores are personal to the reviewer and could reflect anything from being technically brilliant to gloriously cheesy fun.

Demos and independent releases get some slack since the bands are often spent broke supporting themselves and trying to improve. Major releases usually have big financial backing, so they may be judged by a heavier hand. All scores can be eventually adjusted up or down by comparison of subsequent releases by the same band. We attempt to keep biases out of reviews and be advocates of the consumer without the undo influence of any band, label, management, promoter, etc.

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ALL FULL REVIEWS FOR: BORKNAGAR
CD
TITLE BAND
DOR
REVIEWER DATE
UniversalBorknagar
2010
Raising Iron6/15/2010
UrdBorknagar
2012
Greg Watson3/30/2012
Winter ThriceBorknagar
2016
Greg Watson7/24/2016


ALL SUMMARY REVIEWS FOR: BORKNAGAR

No Summary reviews currently exist for them.


ALL INTERVIEWS FOR: BORKNAGAR
INTERVIEW BAND INTERVIEWER DATE


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