Plus Video Interview With Johan Hegg And Johan Söderberg
Sweden's Amon Amarth sail in with their tenth album 'Jomsviking', a bloodthirsty concept album of honour, valour and love.
Produced by Andy Sneap, Amon Amarth have let a little more melody wash into their sound yet remain distinctively true to themselves.
Long serving drummer Fredrik Andersson is now sailing on a different ship but the rudder is held firmly by Tobias Gustafsson who steers the band onto a new battlefield with a fierce aggression.
Article continues below...
'Jomsviking', the band's tenth album is also their first concept record. It is based around original stories written by vocalist Johan Hegg, soaked in the Norse sagas and legends of the Jomvikings, who were a legendary company of pagan Viking mercenaries in the 10th and 11th Century - who reputedly would fight for any lord able to pay their substantial fees!
The opus was recorded and produced by Andy Sneap (Opeth, Machine Head, Megadeth, Killswitch Engage) at his studio in Derbyshire.
The opening battlecry leads into the opening barrage of 'First Kill' where vocalist Johan Hegg snarls his way through this slaying number.
'The Way Of Vikings' is another rolling anthem of gory content while 'Raise Your Horns' is a future live favourite. A glorious drink raising anthem with a big hearty and brotherly chorus.
'At Dawn's First Light' eases the pace with plenty of melodic guitar work.
Doro Pesch guests on 'A Dream That Cannot Be' which is sung in a different style for Doro, more gentile bringing a beauty and the beast vibe to it with the big gruff vocals of Johan Hegg giving the song an uplifting embrace.
The album ends with the victorious seven-minute epic 'Back On Northern Shores' ensuring that Amon Amarth are a band still very much in command.
One of the biggest heavy metal ticket sellers across Europe, Amon Amarth have come a long way since their 1998 debut 'Once Sent From The Golden Hall', racking up well over a million record sales and festival headline slots at such well known festivals as Wacken and Summerbreeze, amongst others. 2016 is the year of the Viking!
Mark Taylor recently spoke to Amon Amarth's Johan Hegg and Johan Söderberg about the making of 'Jomsviking' in an interview conducted for Record Collector Magazine. You can watch that video here.