The Viking metallers from Sweden are back with their sixth saga “Nattväsen” (Night Creatures). After 14 years of existence and 5 full-length albums Månegarm have definitely built a very strong name. So their 6th album, with a new label again (Regain Records), was highly anticipated.
From the first look at the album you can see the different and unusual (for Månegarm) artwork. Instead of the epic colored drawings by Kris Verwimp (which I prefer), they use this time a Viking symbol with a combination of two strong runes, Gifu and Madr, in a black background without their logo! And if the approach in the artwork is very different, their music hasn’t changed a lot. There is a darker mood in the songs, but the basic characteristics of their music still remain: Folk epic Viking metal with some black / death elements and a mix of grim and clean (somehow wild though) vocals. They still use some traditional instruments and this time violins have a more dominant role.
“Nattväsen” is for sure the most powerful album the band has released up to date, with the best production and most solid sound. Their epic Viking rhythms and the traditional folk scales are combined with some more melancholic melodies this time. So they can “dress” better the night-related pagan themes of the songs, still retaining their folk nature-inspired atmosphere. All nine compositions are in mid-tempo, with few outbursts, very nice melodies and catchy refrains with choir vocals. I would like to comment very positively the work on the violins that offer some magical moments in the songs! There are 9 songs in the album that lasts for 45 minutes and closes with the great epic ballad “Delling”.
Summing up, I believe that “Nattväsen” is a safe investment for all Månegarm fans and all Viking metal fans in general. Great epic songs, with the right “dose” of folk music in order to retain their “weight”, all under a powerful and flawless production. You can get a taste of their new album on the links below.
Originally published on HeavyMetalCosmos