Eldkraft unveil new song from their debut album
Eldkraft are a three piece epic metal band hailing from Sweden. Whilst their music’s foundations are firmly placed within the epic metal category, these proficient musicians seek to blend a variety of different sonic influences into their ambitious sound. Drawing experimental elements from a litany of ancestral music traditions, most specifically from the North and the spiritual guidance of its hermetic crafts. Shaman is their debut album and through its powerful music it circumvents a journey through both history and the ecstasy of the soul.
Pagan metal and its affiliates tends to be a rather limited and played out genre, considering many of the significant soundscapes and influences have been previously done to death by other bands that have come before. It’s a welcome sight then that Eldkraft and their debut album Shaman, is being endorsed by none other than pagan metal overlord A. A. Nemtheanga (the frontman of legendary Irish pagan metal band Primordial) via his label imprint Poison Tongue, in collaboration with Metal Blade Records. Nemtheanga says:
I was turned on to Eldkraft by Mortuus from Marduk and instantly recognized even in its raw demo form, here was something genuine, and it had the potential to be a massive pagan metal album. Not the cartoon stuff but the real deal, immersed in ancient shamanism and traditions with the spirit of Bathory somewhere deep in its bones…Eldkraft!
Nemtheanga knows what it takes to be successful in the genre, and through his long career has likely encountered all manner of played out tropes and poorly thought our contenders to the pagan metal crown. It’s refreshing then that Eldkraft, despite entering a very cluttered arena, truly bring a signature sound that is both fresh and exciting.
Two months ago, the band unleashed the first track from the album “Gammal Krigare” onto Youtube and this was the first indication of the promise this band holds. The riffs are chunky, pronounced and dramatic, spiralling through the tapestry of pagan influences with focus and dexterity. Eldkraft certainly feel more European in their styling than say, Primordial and this plays in their favour. The music resonates with purpose and power, which is subsequently reinforced by the impressive and impassioned vocals, soaring over the mix. If you’re yet to hear it, check it out below.
A month later they unveiled a second song from the album, called “Granslos Grans“. This song begins far more aggressively than the others, carving out a path that leans closely to black metal influences. The riffs pirouette through the musical landscape while the crashing symbols and slamming pedals create a very different depiction of their music. The chorus in particular is an interesting juxtaposition between melodic and reflective guitar passages, sombre vocals and an all out drumming assault. The placement and utilization of synths here is subtle, but a very welcome addition. At the halfway point the music intensifies further and raging tremelo riffs are met by blasting drums in what is a very welcome variation of their sound.
Yesterday, Eldkraft premiered a third song from the album, entitled “Patterns”. For my money, this is on par with the second song released thus far, as “Gammal Krigare” had a tendency to meander slightly due to its longer length. “Patterns” is a tighter rendition of their sound, with a main riff that is extremely reminiscent of their Swedish heritage, sounding very similar to a more muted and doomy version of the famous “Twilight Of The Thunder God” riff from Swedish melodic death metal giants Amon Amarth. Not to imply that Eldkraft are too similar to their peers in the genre, as they put an interesting, meditative spin on it by crafting an emotional and explorative song around it. You can check that out via the exclusive stream over at Last Rites.
The tracklisting for Shaman is as follows:
1. Gammal Krigare
2. Undrets Tid
3. Fate’s Door
4. Moder Liv Till Grav
7. Granslos Grans
8. Grey Man
9. I Dodens Famn
While Eldkraft don’t make a style of music that will appeal to everyone; from these two songs it is clear that if you’re a fan of this sphere of epic/pagan/folk metal then you really should be anticipating the release of Shaman.Eldkraft has far more in common with vintage Borknagar than the speed demon hybrids Battle, that the members of this Swedish oddity hail from. Shaman is an album that explores relatively familiar themes, but with a level of grandiosity and majesty that is rarely seen in metal. Put it in your diaries folks.
Eldkraft’s Shaman is due for release on the 24th/27th May in Europe and the 28th May in North America via Metal Blade Records. Pre-order it here.