Chuck Schuldiner Project

Tuesday, July 24, 2012


So, today I'm bringing you some folk metal from the black pit of Quebec. Despite the poor production Trollwar's debut demo is a solid slab of folk metal that shows a lot of promise. Equal parts Norwegian Black and Norwegian Folk these guys have a solid sound that you will not soon forget. The guitar work is brutal and has a very Ensiferum quality to it at times. The bass playing is heavy and dominates the blackest riffs. Meanwhile the drumming is fast and furious, and really just proper folk metal drumming. The folk instruments are extremely well used and add a great feel to the band. Finally, the growls have the black metal aura that makes for some of the best viking metal! Together, this band forms an impressive sound that overcomes the poor quality of the demo to prove that they can be true lords of metal.

The guitar playing on this record is excellent, in the vein of bands like Hammer Horde or Kings of Asgard the main riffs are all tinged with black metal. However there is a more melodic side that comes out at times. In the solos you get to hear some pure metal shredding which will not fail to impress. The riffs are overall very tasty and feature a lot of the raw power of bands' like Ensiferum.
Overall the guitar playing is well put together and provides a great grounding for the folk instruments to base their sound on. The guitarist is in turn helped out by his stellar rhythm section.

The bass playing on this record is rapid and heavy. It often uses quasi-thrash licks to get the speed of the tracks out. There is a large black metal influence here too. Overall the playing is rather simple, but the tracks are often so fast that the bassist can not afford to spice up his playing. He does get one chance to really shine during the instrumental outro of Through the Unknown where his solid bass playing pushes the guitarists solo to new heights. The drumming is also rather well done. With a lot of super fast double bass work this drummer will always impress you with his speed. Meanwhile, his folk playing is excellent and shows a lot of potential. Overall, the rhythm section of Trollwar is tight and manages to overcome the handicap of the poor production.

Now we move on to the folk instruments. With both a keyboard and an accordion Trollwar is a 7 piece. Normally a band with so many players might have a crowded sound. But Trollwar manages to pull it off. With excellent arrangements a la Elevuitie its impressive to hear all the instruments mix together. The accordion playing is good I guess, I've never really gotten into an accordion band. (But I sure do hear a lot of it on the Paris Metro) It fits in nicely to the arrangements and definitely helps the music. Meanwhile the keys are symphonic and add a mystical layer to this group. I really like the arrangements and they really help build up this bands' sound.

Finally we have the vocals, with a black metal growl stolen straight from deepest Norway this bands vocalist is truly talented. He could be compared to the vocalist of Dimmu Borgir, his singing has the same quality to it. His lyrics are also very well put together and they capture a great fantasy aura. With song titles like Shores of Sorrows and Bloodshed Forges you can see what Trollwar is about. Good old folk metal that is not afraid to go fully into the viking lore. To wrap up, the vocals are very much in the vein of folk metal groups like Hammer Horde and capture some awesome black metal magic.

In conclusion, Trollwars' debut demo is an excellent slab of heavy metal. With lots of folk melodies and tons of shredding these guys really know how to make proper folk metal. The guitar riffs have a melodic side to them that overcomes their black metal riffing during the verses. The bass playing is very heavy and fast, but it dominates the more atmospheric parts. I really like the drumming with a guy behind the kit who seems like he can handle it all. The folk instruments are great and help make this band a lot more trve sounding. Finally the vocals are black and powerful and get the job done perfectly. So, go check out Trollwar, you won't regret it!

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