Saturday, November 22, 2008

WAYLANDER - Honor Amongst Chaos CD review

WAYLANDER - Honor Amongst Chaos CD
Listenable Records

WAYLANDER has had a rich and significant history in the Pagan Folk Metal scene. The Northern Ireland band started out in 1998 and prior to this latest CD the band had two previous releases. Their first, Reawakening Pride Once Lost, is a cult favorite amongst fans of this genre. They followed that up with 2001's The Light, the Dark, and the Endless Knot which also garnered the band praise from fans. But since then WAYLANDER has been silent until now. WAYLANDER's Pagan Folk Metal sound is reminiscent of Finland's KORPIKLAANI in that they too intertwine traditional homeland folk instruments and song structures within their Metal sound. There's plenty of other bands under this genre title that just add a violin or an accordion solo to a song and call it Folk Metal. But WAYLANDER don't rely on cliched folk styles or gimmicks. Secondly they lean more toward Black Metal which is great in my book.

Honor Amongst Chaos is a release that could turn even the most jaded Anti-Folk Metal listener into a fan. Nine great tracks all longer that five minutes and each it's own mini-epic. There's a dynamic feeling behind each cut on here. Once you think you have them figured out WAYLANDER toss chaos into your midst. Insanity under control as Black Metal signatures mix with traditional Irish Folk music. Blast beats and tin whistles getting equal time together. Acoustic guitar passages morphing into traditional Metal anthems with joined in choruses. The vocals are a mix of harsh Black Metal shrieks and clean vocals. And the lyrics are more like the tales of an ancient story teller. These are things you find in the history books. All in all one of the best Pagan Folk Metal releases I've heard this year.

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