Rodovest - _Here Is the Russian Land..._
(Soldats Inconnus, 2006)
by: Nikola Shahpazov (5 out of 10)
Presented here is a reissue of Rodovest's first demo, dating back to 2003, and having already been released numerous times in both tape and CD format. _Here Is the Russian Land..._ is a prime example of far right, nationalist Russian metal, complete with a runes / swastikas / axes logo and lyrics praising the Pagan times as well as the beauty of Northern European nature.

The quality of the recording is rather awful, which is what you might expect from a demo, but still quite irritating at times. As is usually the case with pagan metal, Rodovest's main objective was to offer a record that was epic, melodic and folkloric at the same time.

Mainman Temnojar is known for his solo project (keyboard music leaning towards the neoclassical) and his influence on _Here Is the Russian Land..._ is indeed obvious. Not only are keyboards heavily present on album intro "Tongues of Flame", but they form the backbone of most of the tracks -- at times adequate, at others simply annoying. On the whole, this is Viking-like metal with a definite melodic edge plus faster blackish parts, although due to (lack of) production the more aggressive riffs are barely audible, thus lacking any real power or impact.

On tracks like "Russian North" and "On the Shores of the Wolfensea", Rodovest operate rather well in the Falkenbach / Forefather territory, while on others the music is reminiscent of Temnozor minus flute. The real lowpoint of this disc are the vocals: badly recorded when distorted and ingloriously out of key when clean, the latter being especially ruinous on vocal-based tracks "The Sorrow" and "Fall of Rus".

Although enthusiastic and at times tolerable, _Here Is the Russian Land..._ is hardly a match for many bands on the Russian pagan scene.

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(article published 1/5/2007)

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