Unearthing The Metal Underground: The Folk Metal Scene Part 2
Each week with Unearthing the Metal Underground, we shine the spotlight onto three bands that may not have had a chance to hit your musical radar yet. This week we’re taking another look into a unique blend of styles that show how not every metal band has to scream about Satan or politics or personal struggles.
After previously looking at underground folk metal in general last year and then folk metal specifically from the Andes, we’re now delving into three bands that all share a love of Celtic and pagan themes, as well as a desire to mix traditional instruments with abrasive black metal or melodic power metal.
Whether you are looking for a night of fun drinking in a folk atmosphere, an in-your-face dose of extreme metal that draws from other influences, or even a more melodic and calm experience, these three bands show what Canada, Arizona, and the U.K. have to offer in the world of folk metal.
For our first trek into folk-laced metal we’ll take a look at Canadian act Trollband, which recently released the debut album “In The Shadow of a Mountain” (reviewed here). The band has now made the album available as a completely free download to get the music out to a wider audience.
In conjunction with the album’s review, Metalunderground.com conducted an interview with Trollband to discuss the band’s decision to give away the release and other topics, such as the many guest musicians appearing on “In the Shadow of a Mountain.” The interview is available for viewing here.
Splitting the difference between a harsher act like Finntroll and a more melodic band like Equilibrium, Trollband has plenty of symphonic black metal mayhem to keep the heads banging, even while a host of folksy sounds keep the music grounded in a more traditional style. To hear more of Trollband you can check out the band’s MySpace page, or listen to the songs “Heathen Blood” or “Nidhoggr” in the clips below.
Much less harsh and aggressive than Trollband, U.K. act Cryptic Age is focused on putting Celtic female vocals at the forefront of the sound, while the guitar work heads into melodic power metal territory. In the first player below you can check out Cryptic Age performing the song “Bring Down the Sky,” which is off the band’ s “Homeland” EP (reviewed here). Additional live footage is available below, or you can find more details on Cryptic Age at the group’s Facebook profile.
Taking folk metal to yet another level, Arizona’s Adavant has a little bit everything. The mix of black metal with folk sounds, along with a regular helping of female vocals, are all present and accounted for. But Adavant is also known to throw in an infectious level of fun that makes bigger name folk groups like Korpiklaani so irresistible.
Adavant has songs available for streaming through the band’s Facebook page, or you can check out “A Penny for the Folk” or “Warband” in the players provided below.
These are only three of the many folk metal bands to be found around the world, and certainly there are even more quality acts to be found in the folk metal scene. Feel free to discuss your favorite folk influenced metal outfits in the comments below, and check back again next Monday as we unearth more bands in the metal underground.
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