Now before we go into this review I need to ask you something. Are you a man? By the off chance that you, the reader, are a female then I ask you this; are you a man? If you’re a guy, chances are you’re not very manly, unless you’ve heard of Amon Amarth. Now there will be those of you that cry out “[Insert metal band] is sooo much more manly” but I am here to tell you YOU ARE WRONG! WRONG!
Amon Amarth, if you didn’t already know, is a Swedish melodic death metal band. Now these aren’t some lame excuse for a death metal band that prances around looking fashionable, these guys are big, burly, angry Swedes, not a combo that you think of much. Here’s the best part, all of their music is Viking themed. Now don’t go thinking Manowar, a bunch of airbrushed asshats standing around some maiden. Think Vikings. Big, nasty hair-having, fur-wearing, axe and sword singing, village burning vikings. If you weren’t aware, vikings have two goals in life: kill your family, and burn your village to the ground, both they do with a smile that would make the grinch look angry.
Now that we’ve cleared that up, on to the review.
“Twilight of the Thunder God” is the seventh studio album by the band, and the highest charting one in their home land of Sweden. The album itself keeps up with all of their previous albums in talking about the finer things in life. Killing Fenrir, Ragnarök, sailing across oceans to piss on the graves of your enemies, and just generally being more manly than any man to ever be. Apple users can find the extended CD on iTunes for a mere 12 dollars, which is well worth it. It’s basically two CDs, TotTG and the band playing at Germany’s Summer Breeze Festival circa 2007.
You get the new tracks, and a handful of excellent old ones as well. Although I will say some of the tracks don’t sound as good live as they do recorded, but with the way Johan Hegg growls and sings, its no surprise why. Studio tracks are littered with appearances from Apocalyptica, a metal orchestra group (yes, it happened) and other giants like Entombed, and Children of Bodom’s Roope Latvala.
It opens up with the track of the same name, a brutal track laced with searing guitar and war-like drums, depicting the battle between Thor and Fenrir. Moving on to Free Will Sacrifice, the second song up is a more guitar driven chant about vikings battling it out with whatever douchebags decided they liked the idea of having their buddies killed. This theme is heavy throughout the album, thick guitar riffs, war drums, and snarling vocals depicting epic battles, pissed off vikings, wolves, gods, giants, you name it.
The track “Live for the Kill” blends the same frantic death metal with breaks for a truly great orchestral piece by Apocalyptica, giving the album a nice way to wrap up. As I said before, the rest of the deluxe cd contains live material. It’s in a sense its own record, filled with great tracks from previous albums like “Fate of Norns” and “Cry of the Blackbird.”
“Twilight of the Thunder God” is a brutal album, there is no doubt about it. The seventh in line for the Vikings known as Amon Amarth, and still a great addition to any metal lovers collection. I myself am a huge fan of the band and I’m not even a big metal head. Anyone looking for a cool new album for a decent price should look into “Twilight of the Thunder God.” For twelve dollars you get two albums, and a chance to sample the new and old of the band for those of you who haven’t heard of them before.
Score: 8.25/10 (Great)