To me this is THE Viking Metal-album! Forget THYRFING (which I love), forget MITHOTYN (I do love them, too), forget ENSLAVED (OK, I never really got into them), EINHERJER are the true kings and "Dragons Of The North" is their crown!
From the first moments of the title-track to the dying sounds of the "Ballad Of The Swords", everything has this unique atmosphere that brings a horde of long-haired, bearded warriors to your mind's eye, who are awaiting landfall in the sleek form of a dragon-ship, to start their next pillage!
Be it the intensity of "Dragons Of The North", the almost playful levity of "Dreamstorm" that reminds me of the dance of a dragon-ship under full sail atop the waves, the sheer impetus of "Forever Empire", the rhythmic "Conquerer" with its strong bass, the slow-paced evilness of "Fimbul Winter", the ultimate battle-hymn "Storms Of The Elder", crowned with a brilliant riff, (one of the best Viking Metal-hymns EVER!), the heaviness of "Slaget Ved Harfsfjord" or the slow epicism of "Ballad Of The Swords", each and everyone of them outstanding compositions that just enthuse!
Brilliant melodies aplenty, underlaid with rhythms that do not fit the norms, always accessible, yet still demanding, with a good portion of heaviness and the gruff vocals of Rune Bjelland that fit perfectly, it all unites to a perfect whole...
This album has a raw majesty, an epic heaviness that you will search on many albums, but will find only so very rarely!
I love this album!!!