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Beautiful and Epic - 100%

mjollnir, April 12th, 2014

Moonsorrow are probably my favorite band of the new millennium era of metal bands. These guys play a folk metal/black metal/pagan metal. It's kinda hard to nail them down....I like to call them heathen/nature metal due to their lyrics. And speaking of lyrics, thankfully they translate all of their lyrics because they sing in Finnish, their native tongue. They have six full lengths, four demos and an EP to date. This is Suden Uni, their debut full length released in February of 2001. I first heard this band some time right after their third full length was released in 2003 and I immediately became a fan. This band is epic as fuck and the talent that is displayed by these guys is undeniable. Their mix of folk and metal is stunning and this album is a fine example of the best of this sub genre of metal that seemed to grow very large during the previous decade.

The album kicks off with "Ukkosenjumalan Poika" ("Son of the God of Thunder" if your Finnish is rusty) and the riffs begin with bombastic drums and epic keys. The songwriting here is just amazing with the keyboards providing a symphonic atmosphere that can take you away but without overpowering the guitars. The guitars are done with riffs and huge chords to pummel you. The vocals are of a black metal nature that sound painful and maybe angry at times but full of emotion. This is the quintessential album opener that leads right into the opening riff of the second song, "Köyliönjärven jäällä (Pakanavedet II") ("On the Ice of Köyliönjärvi (Pagan Waters II"). Along with the epic riffs of this song the keys are right in there...then what the fuck? Accordion? Yes, it is and this is one of those things that make this band so special. But along with accordions and even mouth harps is this massive wall of guitars, electric and acoustic, giving this song even more depth. There are some clean vocals here and there that sound like male choirs.

This band writes long songs and on this album the longer songs range between six and eleven minutes in length with two instrumentals that are not as long. Given their length, these songs never get boring or get cumbersome. They flow along and keep you interested...because they can write good songs. The songs are intricate without becoming pretentious. "Kuin ikuinen" ("As Eternal") is a fine example with many tempo changes and riff changes that keep you listening, even the sound of an epic battle is included. How can you not love this band? Once again, the keys give this even more depth and an epic feeling. "Tuulen koti, aaltojen koti" ("Home of the Wind, Home of the Waves") is an absolute beautiful instrumental that starts with the sound of the ocean and acoustic guitars for the intro going into bombastic guitars and keyboards making you feel like you are there. There's a faint flute playing in there as well. The song builds with guitars (acoustic and electric), keys, accordions and that faint flute. That shit gives me goose bumps! More proof that this is one of the finest bands in metal and above that, something very special.

Now "1065: Aika" ("1065: Time") has to be given mention just due to it's complexity and epic sound. This is the longest song on the album clocking in at eleven minutes. It begins with the sound of wind, some keyboards and some far off acoustic guitars very softly slowly getting louder that builds up to these massive guitar riffs and vocal screams. Then this builds up with epic guitars and keys with some clean vocals as well as some black metal screams all leading to a crescendo of clean vocal choirs. Here's them goddamn goosebumps again! Look, if you don't get goosebumps from this, check your pulse because you may be DEAD! No other band has made me feel this way about their music. Pop the CD on, get your headphones on, lay back and go on a journey that takes you to the forest, then to epic battle scenes, and then to the sea. There is no other band like this, anywhere!


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