Heidindomr Ok Motgangr

Dark Essence/Karisma 2011

Norway's longstanding Viking metallers Helheim return from the frosty north with a new masterpiece of Heathenish pride.  On their 7th full-length album they exude confidence and a mastery of their craft which comes from a long career of doing what they love.  Viten Og Mot slowly surges to life with bombastic horns, deep drums and melodic and melancholic riffs.  The guitar solo featured on the song is so emotional and classy that one can't help but be mesmerized by its beauty.  Soaring, epic melodies and captivating clean vocals complete the song's journey.  A restrained galloping pace is the foundation for Dualitet Og Ulver.  The song achieves an animalistic and melancholic duality.  The riffs are in some ways harsh while simultaneously possessing a forlorn quality.  The dual vocals on Viten Og Mot imbue a demented edge to the song.  The pace plods at first and then sprints quickly only to fall back in on its original tempo.  The shimmering guitar and clean instrumentation in the middle of Madr creates a dream-like state within the consciousness of the track.  The track sullenly shifts upwards into demonic and violent black metal riffage.  This carries over into Viten Og Mot.  Aggressive black metal with a powerful and memorable main riff strides maliciously towards the song's calm and unsettling innards, which combines off-kilter notes and melodic soloing.  It brings to mind a mentally fragmented version of Enslaved.  The melancholic clean guitar and overall sorrowful texture of Element brings to mind Brave Murder Day era Katatonia.  The guitar solo at the 3:32 mark of the song is the highlight of the album for me.  Truly engaging, gripping.  Once again Helheim have crafted an album that is filled with depth and maturity.  Heidindomr Ok Motgangr swells with pagan beauty and creates a new pinnacle in Helheim's long and illustrious existence.