20 January, 2014

Amon Amarth: Father Of The Wolf – new video

It’s been chronicled it took twelve centuries for the word of god to reach Scandinavia - only for it to fall on deaf ears; Odin, Thor and even jötunn Loki (although he is much harder to satisfy, I reckon) would be/are very pleased with the new AMON AMARTH burnt offering (video) ‘Father Of The Wolf’, for sure. Written by Daniel J.W. Hughes as imagined (directed and produced) by Ramon Boutviseth, starring Davis Osborne and Ryan Barringer and executive-produced by Justin Arcangel and Metal Blade's own Brian Slagel, ‘Father Of The Wolf’ comes off the Norse conquerors ninth album, ‘Deceiver Of The Gods’, issued on Metal Blade Records in June 2013, in AMON AMARTH's 25th year of existence. ‘Deceiver Of Gods’ performed exceptionally well upon its release: it sold approximately 17,000 copies in the USA in its first week of release, where it landed position number 19 on The Billboard Top 200, it entered the German Charts at number 3, the Austrian Charts at number 7, and the Swedish, Canadian and Swiss Charts at number 9 – with a bit of help from Loki. Because you see, the album is dedicated to “the most human of all the gods in northern mythology”:
“A lot of people see him as an evil character, but he’s not the equivalent of Satan. He also does a lot of good things, and particularly with his talent for diplomacy he manages to get the gods out of trouble a lot of times. The only problem is that he’s usually the one that gets them into trouble in the first place,” [elaborated AMON AMARTH's thundering voice, scribe and (rumored) Thor's second cousin once removed Johan Hegg]
If you agree with Dom Lawson, The Guardian who described ‘Deciever Of Gods’ as AMON AMARTH's finest album (more here), and if you’ve answered AllMusic's James Christopher Monger question correctly:
“What begins with scorching, melodic twin leads, a mead-induced flurry of double-kick drumming, and the meatiest, most malevolent vocals this side of Valhalla? If you answered “The ninth studio outing from Swedish melodic death metal legends AMON AMARTH” then you are correct and can drink from the chalice,” [more here]
then you are obviously already a proud owner of the Swedish metal legends' latest effort. And if not, buy the album from here (Metal Blade store) or from wherever you usually buy your music:

Originally called “Scum”, AMON AMARTH had formed in 1988 in Tumba, Sweden. As “Scum”, the band reportedly made no impression upon the Stockholm metal scene until the arrival of imposing figure that is vocalist Johan Hegg. As AMON AMARTH, the group recorded two demos, 1993's ‘Thor Arise’ and 1994's ‘The Arrival Of The Fimbul Winter’, which were followed by their first EP, ‘Sorrow Throughout The Nine Worlds’, released in 1996 on Pulverised Records. Their debut on Metal Blade and the first of three full-lengths worked on with producer Peter Tägtgren (HYPOCRISY and PAIN), ‘Once Sent From The Golden Hall’ was issued in 1998:

Later that year, guitarist Anders Hansson and drummer Martin Lopez would leave the band to be replaced with Johan Söderberg and Fredrik Andersson, respectively. In 1999, AMON AMARTH recorded and released their second full-length, ‘The Avenger’:

“The riffing from guitar and drums is workmanlike, and Hegg's vocal rants carry all the requisite ferocity,” was AllMusic's Jason Anderson comment on AMON AMARTH's 2001 third full-length, ‘The Crusher’:

Ferocious touring in support of each and every release seemingly had no effect on the attacking Vikings, since they’ve issued their fourth record a mere year later. ‘Versus The World’ was produced by Berno Paulsson:

2004's ‘Fate Of Norns’ continued AMON AMARTH's slower, heavier sound which started on their previous album. AllMusic's Wade Kergan was impressed:
“These aren’t just songs written about Vikings, they are written by Vikings. They’re ready for death in ‘Arson’ where one of five left to burn survives and comes back for revenge in that tracks' sequel, ‘Once Sealed In Blood’. Blood lust themes aren't unusual, but AMON AMARTH tackle them with a depth often lacking from their contemporaries. Which brings up the most intriguing track, ‘Fate Of Norns’: “No man should have to bury his child/Yet this has been my share/The tears I shed run bitter and wild/It’s a heavy burden to bear.” A knotty subject for a band and a style more given to crushing skulls than tears, but that kind of depth is what AMON AMARTH have brought to ‘Fate Of Norns’ and what makes it stand out in a sea of barbarian pretenders,” [more here]:

AMON AMARTH's first album to be produced by Jens Bogren was also their first to make an impression on American Billboard charts. “Death metal with some melody? Can it be? As evidenced by AMON AMARTH's 2006 release, ‘With Oden On Our Side’, this dream seems to be a reality early on,” heard the call to arms AllMusic's Greg Prato [more here]: 

After extending their record deal with Metal Blade for three more albums, the true sons of Thor recorded their breakthrough album ‘Twilight Of The Thunder God’. Released in 2008, the album debuted at number 50 on the Billboard Top 200 and at number 11 on the Swedish Album charts. Exclaimed Greg Prato, AllMusic: “If extreme metal existed back in the days of Vikings, Sweden's AMON AMARTH would undoubtedly be the musical choice of vessels sailing rough and treacherous seas.” (More here): 

2011's ‘Surtur Rising’ had sold around 15,000 copies during its first week in the United States alone. It has become AMON AMARTH's highest charting album in the U.S. (until ‘Deceiver Of Gods’), debuting at position number 34 on the Billboard Top 200:
“The album's ten songs are typical anthemic AMON AMARTH tracks, built for headbanging and chanting along with the powerful, warrior's-code choruses,” [wrote Phill Freeman, AllMusic] A few subtle production flourishes - the sounds of clashing swords on ‘War Of The Gods’ and crying ravens on ‘Töck's Taunt’, plus some strings on ‘For Victory Or Death’ and the album-closing ‘Doom Over Dead Man’ - bolster the sound somewhat, but other than that it’s up to the five members of AMON AMARTH to keep the listener happy with nothing but guitars, bass, drums, and  Johan Hegg's barrel-chested roars, and they do that with admirable skill.” [More here:]

AMON AMARTH features: Johan Hegg - vocals, Johan Söderberg - guitar, Olavi Mikkonen - guitar, Ted Lundström - bass and Fredrik Andersson – drums 


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