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Celtic music + melodeath = this. - 79%

DGYDP, March 3rd, 2008

The title pretty much sums up the album. Thanks for reading my review.

All jokes aside, there’s actually a lot of truth in the previous sentence. Slania is basically folk music, melodeath and Gaulish vocals put together in twelve songs. The formula is simple, but it works. Oh and for everybody with an IQ lower than 5, Gaulish is the language the people in France used to talk before Caesar came along and arsoned, murdered and raped everybody (in that exact order) he came across. Anyway, the vocals are a combination of melodeath styled singing and ‘epic’ war chants. Both of these styles are done well, especially the ‘epic’ parts, which made me want to jump up and start running around naked while swinging a battle axe. The production is as tight as a baby’s vagina, and can be described as near to perfect. I’m sure a crappy producer/mixer would have ruined the band’s sound, and I’m glad this is not the case. A clear mix was chosen, which is a good thing because all the instruments can be heard. Blurry/raw production would surely have ruined this album.

Drums are also very satisfying, providing a good transition between folk and metal. Guitar parts are cool as well, though not a highlight on the album. Think In Flames ten years ago -but less complex- and you get an idea of how the melodeath parts sound like. There are a couple of great riffs scattered across the album and even a good solo in ‘Elembivos’. The tone Kenzi and Koch use is quite similar to what something Alexi Laiho might have chosen for, on the early Bodom records. The bass is a bit of a let down, because Rafi Kirder simply follows the rhythm parts.

Greatest feature on the album are without a doubt the folk instruments. Hurdygurdys, flutes, whistles, fiddles, bodhrans (don’t ask), uillean pipes (again, don’t ask), etc. If you have ever heard Celtic music you know how they sound like, though most original Celtic music is a lot slower than this. Good stuff. To be honest, I’d like to have seen less melodeath and more folk! Nonetheless the combination of these two genres sounds great, particularly on the first half of the album. If you’re not familiar with folk metal, this is a great place to start.

So, I recommend this album to anybody who likes melodic death metal, or anybody who likes folk metal. I was never a huge fan of any of these genres, and I still love this album. That being said I also recommend this album to anybody who is interested into hearing how metal and folk can be combined in a good way. I’m pretty sure this formula has been used many times before, and is not original … but it’s a great place to start. I'm not giving a higher rating simply because there's too much melodeath and because the formula employed to create the album is not original or new.