Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Wardruna — Runaljod - gap var Ginnunga (2009)

Some things take time. This band, for example. I've had the first album of Wardruna for more than a year and I didn't listen to it much. Maybe my musical taste has changed, or it is another of these intense musical phases that I have but it is now in among my favorites.

Wardruna is a band making music centered on the theme of Nordic spirituality and shamanism. It's members are Einar "Kvitrafn" Selvik (drummer of Black Metal band Gorgoroth), Lindy Fay Hella and Gaahl (famous for being the signer Gorgoroth). Up to now, the group has only released Runaljod - gap var Ginnunga, but two more albums are supposed to be in creation with the aim of creating a trilogy (called the Runajod Trilogy). Each album explores the theme of 8 runes. The group uses ancient traditional folk instruments (deer-hoof percussion, hide drums, bone flutes, goat horn), field recordings (water, thunder, birds), and vocals. The signing is really impressive here. Lindy Fay has a beautiful voice and she really can sing, there is also some throat singing by both Gaahl and Kvitrafn.

Wardruna has had a lot of success and recognition lately. They have played live on Norwegian television, had a concert in the Viking Ship Museum of Oslo and they are part of a lot of festivals. Their next albums seem to be expected by a lot of people.

This is great music for people who like ambient/tribal/medieval bands like Dead Can Dance. Sure it's not the only band to try to tackle the viking theme, but it is really a good interpretation of it. I'm not sure how historically accurate is Wardruna's music but I like it that way, very cinematic.

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