THYRFING are back, more than three years after “Vansinnesvisor”, with “Farsotstider”, the fifth album of the Swedes. I already have had my problems with “Vansinnesvisor“, which thankfully evaporated with several listens, and with the new album the problems are back, just more massive than three years ago.
So what are these problems? For one Thomas Väänänen’s vocals, which have turned even harsher than before and are getting harder and harder to digest for my ears, and going with that they have further reduced the epic atmosphere, which had been such a distinct element in the band’s sound for years. Instead they have turned even darker and emphasize the guitars a lot more than the keyboards, which is a quite big change for THYRFING.
Opener “Far At Helvete“ covers the almost complete spectrum of tempos, while Väänänen roars everything into the ground, which my ears do not exactly agree with, which is partly continued with “Jag Spår Fördärv“, while the acoustic guitars they use together with the regular ones (at the same time) bring in a very interesting touch and the keyboards add their melodies a bit more in the background. The title track then stands closest to the old THYRFING, the keyboards are stronger, the rhythm and the light choir also awake memories, hopefully this is a good sign!
It is at least partly, because “Höst” again adds acoustic guitars, combined with a Folk Metal-like rhythm and some more choir, while “Själavrak“ forms some sort of middle way between old and new. The very intense middle part of “Elddagjämning“ is a highlight of this album, while “Baldersbalet” with its sluggish rhythm again reminds me of the old days. And it gets even better, with the long “Tiden Läker Intet“, which once again adds more keyboards and even features a violin, very varied, very good!
After that my promo still contains a track that according to the info does not even exist, “Järnvidjors Dans“, apparently the Japanese bonus track, with swift rhythm, slow pre-chorus, driving chorus, some violin, another good one.
Now the review reads a lot more positive than my introduction, doesn’t it? Well, as the previous album this one also really has grown on my, but Väänänen’s very harsh delivery still leaves a slightly bloody, ehm, bitter aftertaste, as it is just a bit too rough for this sound… (Online March 18, 2006)