There are two types of epic death metal bands, pure ragers with sick musicianship and theatrical bands (also usually with sick musicianship) that blend nontraditional influences in their music (be that a pirate theme, sci-fi fantasy themed albums, celtic/folk influences, etc) and Crimfall is pretty much the bee’s knees in the latter category. The band takes ferocious vocals, pulse pounding riffs, and thunder cracking drums along with grand melodies and exquisite clean vocals and turns it into something truly magnificent. Their latest release, Amain, hits hard like that moment you realized you were hooked on Game of Thrones and as it goes on it just gets better and better.
With Amain, Crimfall has essentially crafted the perfect soundtrack to ride into battle with a freshly sharpened blade held high. Everything about Amain is pretty damn adrenaline inducing, beginning with the operatic vocals of Helena Haaparanta; their purpose seemingly to get the blood flowing. The clean vocals on Amain are quite simply beautiful, strong, and like something you’d expect to hear from a lovely siren leading you to an entranced death. Even with the hypnotic, harmonious nature of them there’s a strength that can bend steel; they are something to behold and definitely utilized for maximum effectiveness throughout the album’s ten tracks. For fans of heavy lows do not be disheartened by this beautiful news, while the cleans are straight up phenomenal, the roaring growls of Mikko Häkkinen are not lacking in the least bit. Take the album’s explosive track, “The Last of Stands”, the vocals are essentially a perfect blend of masculine rage and feminine strength, the track serving as a call to arms; an album as bold and powerful as Amain needs to prepare you for what is to come.
The next four tracks (“Ten Winters Apart pts 1-4”), are a masterpiece of metal deliciousness, each building upon the previous track to create a sonic landscape of grand proportions. The second track of the four part sonnet, “Song of Mourn”, does a magnificent job of being extremely emotional yet not overdoing it; it is death metal poetry. The third track of the foursome, “Sunder the Seventh” is yet another perfect example of how to mix clean and roaring vocals, as well as how well Crimfall work together to create music. As if that weren’t enough, Amain slides into Part Four, “Dawn Without a Sun”, and one begins to wonder is this the peak of this album? While the incendiary growls and riffs that hit like mace swings encircle velvety vocals from Helena, it definitely is not signal that the album is winding down at all. The track ends on at slightly slower tempo than most of the preceding tracks but this is merely a chance to catch your breath before the onslaught of heaviness begins again. The seventh track on Amain, “Mother of Believers”, comes at you like a sneak attack with a pillowcase full of bricks; boasting slightly cheeky build-up, the track blows up on you like stepping on a forgotten landmine.
Amain is explosive, powerful, beautiful, and bold. Bloodrock Media had the pleasure of interviewing guitarist Jakke Viitala recently, he humbly but confidently expressed Crimfall’s desire to focus on the arrangement and the little details on Amain that would bring it all together. Simply throwing together an album was not the band’s intent, instead they took their time and put out a well executed, epic third album. Crimfall’s attention to detail is obvious throughout Amain but what really stands out is how smooth the transitions are between chanting to straight up thrashing or the gorgeous clean vocals by their powerhouse female lead to straight up brutality by her male counterpart; all of which are perfectly flawless. Jakke stating, “Not everything we do, is pure gold anymore. So we have to dig deeper and work harder to reach our goals. And because of this, everything we do sounds better nowadays”. The fact that Crimfall has been together for a decade is apparent in their magnetic cohesiveness, their hard work has definitely paid off. Crimfall and Amain showcase the importance of hard work and cohesion for a band, with each member putting their best foot forward.
The proof is in the war-torn pudding with Amain, Crimfall worked hard to create a sick album and succeeded on all fronts, so pick it up when it drops on August 25th, 2017.
You can check out our interview with Jakke Viitala here.
2. The Last of Stands
3. Ten Winters Apart, Pt. 1: Far from Any Fate
4. Ten Winters Apart, Pt. 2: Song of Mourn
5. Ten Winters Apart, Pt. 3: Sunder the Seventh…
6. Ten Winters Apart, Pt. 4: Dawn Without a Sun
7. Mother of Unbelievers
8. It’s a Long Road
9. Wayward Verities
10. Until Falls the Rain
Mikko Häkkinen – Vocals
Helena Haaparanta – Vocals
Jakke Viitala – Guitars
Miska Sipiläinen – Bass
Janne Jukarainen – Drums
Check out Crimfall here:
Bloodrock Rating: 4.5 out of 5.0 axes
Written by Ken Kaizer for Bloodrock Media on August 8, 2017
#crimfall #amain #metalbladerecords #bloodrockmedia