Ot Serdca K Nebu
Straight from the heart of Russian Federation, Arkona deliver a massive album of Pagan Metal that shows they are at the top of their game. Front woman Masha produces devilish screams and growls (that are downright scary) and then graces us with a clean, bardish style to offset things. The guitars, bass and pounding drums rage along side more traditional folk instruments (many of which I have no idea what they are). Some tracks have battle cries chanting in the background (in which you can envision massive armies, swords and other weapons held high waiting for the upcoming battle) while others are devoid of any modern instrumentation or vocals and are wonderful, elegant pieces using the aforementioned folk instruments. Arkona skillfully connect the sounds of the lost, ancient past with the powerful metal styles of today that showcase an extremely multi-talented band. To be honest, they could drop the metal aspect of their music and focus entirely on the folk elements and still have a brilliant album. Perhaps they might explore that as a side project somewhere in the future.
- Craig Harvey