Moonsorrow - _Verisäkeet_
(Spikefarm, 2005)
by: Chris Flaaten (9.5 out of 10)
Moonsorrow is a band that keeps getting better, but it was hard to foresee that they would make such a monumental album straight after the very enjoyable but uneven _Kivenkantaja_. That is, until I saw them live in November and witnessed their amazing skill, extreme enthusiasm and intense love for metal firsthand. These Finns have always been free of inhibitions and pretensions and have let the music flow freely, complete with folk music moments and cheesy Casio sessions -- whatever feels right to them. This time the approach is again unbridled, but the outcome has turned out a little different. The music is more focused, more intense, more... serious, yet in no way do these things feel "forced". If anything, the organic flow and structure that has been Moonsorrow's trademark is more apparent than ever. This band conjures up waves and sends them at you. They're just a lot more crushing this time around.

_Verisäkeet_, consisting of four fourteen to nineteen minute songs and an eight minute outro, starts off with "Karhunkynsi", a song that opens with a typical folk feel, mainly due to the use of fiddle. I'm no fan of folk influences in metal, but Moonsorrow usually come up with a pleasant approach (quite different from synth/guitarist Henri Sorvali's other band, Finntroll). It doesn't take long before the song starts to show its teeth though, delivering a series of knockout riffs before exploding in a black metal frenzy in the second half. Yes, black metal! The band shows a tremendous range throughout this album and the delivery is rarely short of extraordinary. The songs, like on previous Moonsorrow albums, glide smoothly into each other, making the album a captivatingly continuous journey through these Finns' dramatic musical landscapes. The only downside is that these transitions are sometimes a little long, making the listener restless for more action -- but on the other hand, they cure this yearning superbly every time.

There is only one other band that can match these Finns when it comes to the astonishing mixture of playing skill, compositional expertise, creativity and originality they show on _Verisäkeet_. That band uses progressive rock with their extreme metal instead of Finnish folk influences, though, leaving Moonsorrow as something very special indeed. Experience them.


(article published 19/4/2005)

2/12/2012 A El Naby 9 Moonsorrow - Varjoina Kuljemme Kuolleiden Maassa
1/18/2007 N Shahpazov 9 Moonsorrow - V: Hävitetty
10/6/2003 Q Kalis 8.5 Moonsorrow - Kivenkantaja
9/1/2002 Q Kalis 9 Moonsorrow - Voimasta ja Kunniasta
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