Spikefarm Records 2008
Epic in its expansive and atmospheric sound, the debut album from Draugnim, Northwind's Ire blows gently across my ears like a cold northern breeze. Majestically rumbling along at a midtempo march these Finnish warriors create pagan moods with thick Aeternus styled dark metal riffing and simplistic Windir-esque keyboard overlays. Album opener Moonpath paints this style across northern landscapes of natural beauty and wonder. Even when they speed things up with blastbeats the keyboards have the effect of keeping the tempo at a modest pace such as on Craionhorn and Feast of the Fallen. On Towards the Dusk, as is also the case with Windir's compositions, the simple yet triumphantly melodic synthesizers, create a nostalgic mood and conjure visions of unspoiled forests, fields and mountains from the distant past. On Sworn to the Waves tread similar ground to Poland's Graveland, weaving epic yarns of a mythical past where preXtian heroes dwelled in realms of majestic splendor. My one complaint on this album is that the drums are a little over produced with some mechanical sounding kick drums. Draugnim prove that Graveland are not the only band capable of evoking pagan landscapes and long forgotten heathenish feelings within their sound. Northwind's Ire evokes a sense of reverence for the lands and mysticism that our ancient forefathers once journeyed upon with unconquered pride. After listening to this album I yearn for a time I can only see in my dreams and Northwind's Ire helps transport me there.