Release the Canadian kraken!

-- Trollwar --

Stijn Daneels

Album genres:
Blackened folk metal
Melodic death metal
Album artists:
Värgal The Storyteller Vocals
Wäx The Rogue Assassin Guitar
Holrägh The Young Berseker Guitar
Keven Villeneuve Bass
Exodiüs The Blacksmith Drums
Trolläthan The Old Bard Accordion

Review written by Glenn Van Bockstaele.

Trollwar is a Canadian blackened melodic folk metal formed in 2011. “Oath Of The Storm” is their second album and is an extended and remastered version of their 2017 EP “The Traveler’s Path.” The album is an independent release and was sent to us by Canadian promoter Asher Media Relations. The album starts off with the sound of a ship sailing through a stormy sea with a menacing drum beat playing in the background. Eventually the kraken on the cover art makes its entrance with a thunderous roar and the band begins to play the real opening track, “Summoning!” A lengthy and badass song featuring black and death metal influences carefully balanced off with typically folk instruments and melodies. The third tune “Into Shadows” is a more orchestral track wherein accordions play alongside blast beat drums and epic guitar riffs. In addition vocalist Värgal employs some clean vocals during this song in addition to his usual black metal shrieks. Track 4, “The Forsaken One,” puts a bigger emphasis on traditional melodic death metal with piano and accordion used more sparingly compared to the album’s other songs while still remaining a huge sonic spectacle.

Afterwards, you get treated to “In Defiance,” a true battle hymn reminiscent of acts like Ensiferum and Amon Amarth with lyrics about Nordic battlefields and epic guitar and accordion solos in the middle part! Then things go a bit slower and more folk oriented with the next track, “Hymn For The Vanquished.” Track 7, “Forgotten” is one particularly sweet folk metal song whose beautiful main riff encourages you to move and dance! Up next is “Omens Of Victory,” another typically Trollwar song of blackened melodic folk metal and just as enjoyable and danceable! Then comes my personal favorite track on the album, the ferocious “Home Of Forbidden Lore!” It combines all the elements I heard earlier on the album, piano, accordion, blast beats, black metal shrieks, clean singing and epic guitar riffs and puts all that stuff on steroids! A masterful song! And then comes “Shores Of Madness” that speed things up considerably before entering into another lengthy melodic death metal part with occasional bursts of folk and barbaric drum beats! This goes on in the album’s penultimate track, “Winter’s Night,” signaling the band’s final struggle against the kraken on the album’s front cover. Finally, the victorious orchestral outro track leaves you with a sense of satisfaction after following Trollwar on their intense journey to slay the mythical beast.

I’ve got to say that I had a tremendous time shredding my way through this piece of Canadian blackened melodic folk metal goodness! Trollwar’s second album is a lengthy and highly cinematic experience. Some tracks focus on heavy guitar melodies and blast beats, other songs are more folk oriented with joyful accordion lines, but they are all presented with the same powerful, Viking metal feel! Now it’s your turn to take on the kraken! Here’s the lyric video of the album’s third track, “Into Shadows!”