When Myth and History Merged Into Mystery
You know what the hardest part of this whole review blog thing is? Every once in a while I stumble on a record that I love but have no earthly idea how to translate into actual, human language WHY I love it. Such is the case with this Frost Giant record.
Oh, Norse God of Snow & Bloodshed! Where to begin with this fucking thing?
Actually, I'm just gonna start with the "FFO" bands from the Blasphemour website: "Ensiferum, Korpiklaani, Lagwagon, NOFX, Lifetime & Finntroll." If your eyes narrowed suspiciously at that list, you're not wrong. I can assure you though, they're not just being smart asses. There are traces of all of those bands running through all 5 tracks on this EP. And you know what? It works. Brilliantly, in fact.
It probably shouldn't. I mean, realistically, mixing Fat Wreck skate punk with Finish Folk Metal is the sort of thing that people come up with after mixing pills and booze... 'cause they clearly don't make the best "mixing" decisions. But then realize in the cold grey light of morning that it wouldn't have worked anyways. Best to just move on.
I'm not sure what manner of dark sorcery it took to concoct this record. There is some profound and arcane alchemy at work here. The trick as near as I can tell is that the band never takes the easy way out by being one thing and THEN something different. Instead, they pour the elements together in such a way that they compliment each other and add up to something new and different. The second track, "A Common Son," manages to compliment 90's skate punk style drumming with occasional blast beats. Simultaneously, the band brings in hardcore gang vocals to balance a clean, melodic soaring folk or power metal style chorus.
I'm seriously not doing this record justice. Honestly, I really just think it needs to be heard.
Let me put it this way: We've mentioned before that there are a few different reviewers on this site. And that our tastes vary from pop punk end of the spectrum all the way to the grindcore side of things. I'm not the metalhead here. Everything I know about metal can be, and probably has been, airbrushed onto the side of panel van in Oxnard, California. But, I'm head over fucking heels for this record.
It's honestly just a fun piece of work, and I can't remember the last time I heard metal that I thought was straight up fun.
Which reminds me! The last track here is an Adele cover. And it's fucking awesome.
Top 5 of the year. No joke.