The band’s latest is a self-titled affair on Archaic Sound. For the most part Ymir’s Blood delivers a very traditional sounding type of Metal with a distinct Doom edge to it. Think a dirtied up Manowar with some Twisted Tower Dire, Candlemass, and maybe even some Bathory thrown in. Vocalist Konsta Kaikkonen has a rough delivery, but sings with a distinct enough voice. The album is touted as a full-length, but with just five tracks (one of which is a cover song), it clocks in at only 36 minutes. Slayer used to be able to get away with that, but anymore, this qualifies as an EP. It’s also a bit of a concept album based on Kalevala Runes and ancient Finnish history.
This is one of those bare bones approaches – simply guitar, bass, and drums. The opening track, Unleasher–Beerbarian runs nearly 10 minutes. The Doom elements are pervasive, but that doesn’t mean things plod along at 40 beats per minute. Ymir’s Blood might not be polished, but their style doesn’t allow for that – the dirty sound is perfect for them. The music isn’t always simplistic either. They aren’t Prog Metal, but the incorporation of a bit of rhythmic complexity is something that sets them apart. There is a slight Black Metal feel on this track as well. 1589 reminds me of DoomSword, a vastly underrated and unfortunately unknown band. This track is definitely more in the Doom category than the others. Though it’s slower paced, it’s no less interesting. Vipunen Wisdom has some Prog tendencies, especially with the 5/4 time signature the band uses through a lot of the song. This is probably the best instrumental execution of the album. Definitely some compelling stuff here.
Origin of Iron shows a different side of Ymir’s Blood. While still clearly in the Doom arena, there are other things that set it apart. First off, Henri Kuula appears as a guest. He is a Death Metal vocalist and growls all the way through. Certainly a departure from the rest of the album. Musically, there is a distinct Black Metal tone to the affair. This is the heaviest of the tracks, but not really the best. It’s not bad by any means, just not my preferred song. The band closes with a cover of Led Zeppelin’s Immigrant Song. Not a bad version – definitely darker and slower than the original. I think Ymir’s Blood does it justice, putting their own stamp on it, while maintaining the integrity of the original version. It actually almost sounds like it’s Venom doing the song.
Unfortunately the only video I could get is Immigrant Song:
Better yet, go the band’s bandcamp page and check it out.
Ymir’s Blood isn’t breaking ground, but neither are they ho-hum boring. This is a good find and it doesn’t hurt that they are from the world’s hotbed of Metal otherwise known as Finland. Be sure to check their self titled, especially if you need a dose of 80s influenced dirty, Doom Metal with a twist.
I hear the sound in a Metal way.
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