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Rating explanation

Elvenking - Heathenreel (8/10) - Italy - 2001

Genre: Folk / Power Metal
Label: AFM Records
Playing time: 55:00
Band homepage: Elvenking


  1. To Oak Woods Bestowed
  2. Pagan Purity
  3. The Dweller Of Rhymes
  4. The Regality Dance
  5. White Willow
  6. Skywards
  7. Oakenshield
  8. Hobs An' Feathers
  9. Conjuring Of The 14th
  10. A Dreadful Strain
  11. Seasonspeech
Elvenking - Heathenreel

ELVENKING are a really interesting band from Bella Italia, which nicely differs from all those HELLOWEEN-clones. Their music is very folk-inspired and also includes some medieval sounds. Combined (ah, here it finally is again) melodic Speed Metal and some progressive elements that all mixes into a very well-sounding whole.

Amusingly we even get some harsh growls, which have their special appeal, but apart from that the vocals are typically Italian, quite high, but still are among the better representatives. And ELVENKING also have some really excellent songs to offer, just listen to the furious "The Dweller Of Rhymes" or the epic "Seasonspeech", which both have impressed me. The more often you listen to the album, the more highlights are revealing themselves, but everybody has to find out for himself.

And as the eye also wants its share, NEVERMORE-designer Travis Smith has been won for the cover. Sound-wise also nothing is left to be desired, the New Sin Studio in Italy already is renowned for many high-class works (LABYRINTH, DOMINE, WHITE SKULL). And if that had not been enough already, Fredrik Nordström, known from his works with IN FLAMES , DARK TRANQUILLITY or ARCH ENEMY, had been responsible for the mix!

This debut doesn't catch fire at first sight, but it is surprisingly matured already now.

Ralf Henn

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