After constantly releasing brilliant albums over the years, Amon Amarath returns today with their most mature and melodic work to date: “Jomsviking”. Taking you through an eleven track journey, the band delivers a more refined and developed version of their signature style. Focusing on melody and epicness, the songs in this album are both memorable and intoxicating, allowing the listeners to fully be immersed into the band’s world.
Opening with the first single, “First Kill”, the band lets the listener settle in with a very traditional Amon Amarth-esque piece filled with excellent guitar work and a hefty pace. Smoothly transitioning into “Wanderer”, the music gets more serious and a bit slower, allowing the powerful riffs to lead the way. The band’s session drummer Tobben Gustafsson of Vomitory fame, does a great job in delivering intricate drum patterns and keeping things tight.
As tracks like “On a Sea of Blood”, “One Against All”, “Raise your Horns”, roll by, we start noticing that the band’s sound is even more focused than before and always has the Amon Amarth-vibe, but with a more melodic and epic edge to it. This last track features some excellent atmospheric passages that have hypnotic vocal arrangements, making this song one of the best in the album. Johan Hegg’s vocals are the perfect mix of harsh and understandable (at least for Metal), allowing the underlying stories being told to come front and center to the listener’s, like on the awesome “The Way of Vikings”.
The moodier pieces like “One Thousand Burning Arrows” allow the band to experiment with slower and more melancholic tempos while keeping their incisive guitar work flowing. As surprise collaboration in this release happens on “A Dream that Cannot Be”, featuring the queen of Metal Doro. This song actually is quite interesting as it has a very unique Heavy Metal-esque vibe infused into the walls of riffs of an Amon Amarth track.
Closing with the epic “Back on the Northern Shores”, the band delivers another dark and more melodic piece to what we are used to. While not moving away from their intense energy, “Jomsviking” shows a darker and more mature side of the band with moodier and more melodic songs than before. With tons of brilliant headbanging moments and superbly catchy riffs, Amon Amarth has managed to release an album that is both 100% Amon Amarth and at the same time a bit different to keep the listeners fully engaged and interested.
|Band: Amon Amarth
Label: Metal Blade Records
Release: March 25th, 2016
Genre: Melodic Death Metal