Moonsorrow Voimasta Ja Kunniasta

Weird one, this. The imagery would have you believe that these dudes are fortified, card-carrying members of the "Defenders of the Netherworld, Local 668." Guys who go around with names like Lord Euren and Baron Tarwoven, while wearing chain mail and carrying swords, can have you thinking like that. Throw the disc in and you're confronted with a very pleasing mix of languid Hypocrisy-like rhythms, the infectious righteousness of Skyfire and the power metal majesty of Freedom Call. All topped off with some straight from the gullet black metal vocal screeching - not that it matters though, seeing as all their lyrics are in Finnish. Moonsorrow construct melodic material that's steeped in the verse-chorus-verse basics of power chord use, albeit with a few "experimental" edges, namely the handclaps and that omnipresent springy sound that emits from that most troo kvlt of black metal instrumentation, the mouth harp. (Spikefarm)