Company: Apollon Records Release: 2010 Genre: Blackened pagan/folk Reviewer: ChaosLord
Middle Earth in The Prancing Pony while downing a round of ale
Mondvolland is a pagan/folk metal band from the Netherlands and to be honest I'd never really listened to a lot of pagan/folk metal before spinning "d'Olde Roop". The entire album is in their native language which I won't attempt to venture a guess as to what it is. That being said, "d'Olde Roop" is a departure from the norm for this reviewer but if there is other stuff out there that sounds like this, I'll definitely check it out. The songs have black metal elements to it that are melded with fiddles....yes, fiddles and it isn't bad. There are also some blast beats thrown in there too. Who'd have thought that fiddles and blast beats were a match made in hell?
The songs cover localized legends and the music is really pretty damn cool. You go from shredding guitars and heavy drums with black metal vox to fiddles and clean vocals in the same song and they mix together well. Some good examples are the tracks "Stemmen in de avond" and "'t Oudreemsterveld". It has a very Vintersorg type of feel to the album and even though I don't know what the hell they are saying, I think it's damn good. It sounds like something they would have listened to in Middle Earth in The Prancing Pony while downing a round of ale.
Now, I did start to tire of the songs after about 4 or 5 tracks and if there had been a little more variety and change throughout I'd have been more interested than I ended up being. The production is really clean and I have to give props to the producer for being able to make all the instruments used stand on their own rather than having a few overshadow the majority. My favorite track off the album has got to be "De vuurman van Papendal ". It has a damn fiddle line that reminds of old Dropkick Murphy's and every time I listen to the song I imagine myself hanging with the Hobbits at the Green Dragon just making an ass out of myself.
For those of you bangers that are looking for a departure from the normal metal albums we are used to, give this album a listen. I would recommend trying to find some samples online through YouTube or on the band's online page. Check it out and you may be pleasantly surprised.
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.
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