It’s been a great year for multi-instrumentalist Andreas Hedlund otherwise known as Vintersorg what with his successful release of Urd from his band Borknagar. Now Vintersorg has released his newest solo album (albeit it’s more of an eponymous band than solo work) Orkan. With Orkan, Vintersorg has created a powerful album with great dynamics of the light and dark. When compared to Vintersorg’s other project Borknagar, Vintersorg is somewhat the same. However there are some stylistic differences, while Borknagar emphasises more on black metal Vintersorg focuses more on the folk and progressive side with the occasional black metal vocals. Vintersorg’s Orkan is a continuation of what he has been doing with his past solo records like Jordpuls or Solen Rötter.
Orkan begins with Istid (all the songs are in Swedish) and blasts headlong into fast guitar work alongside fast drumming and alternating harsh and clean vocals. With songs like Ur Stjärnstoft Är Vi Komna or Urvädersfången you see Vintersorg trying to go away from conventional black metal adding elements of folk and progressive. Having the songs sung in Swedish gives Orkan (like past albums) a very folk-like quality and brings to mind Vikings when listening. When one listens to Orkan they will notice the various hooks and catchiness of Vintersorg’s music not uncommon in folk music. However that’s not to say that the music is simple as for instance in Orkan Vintersorg uses interesting guitar riffs, powerful drums, synths, and instruments not conventionally found in metal (like the flute) to keep listeners really interested. One highlight must be Vintersorg’s clean vocals too which are very unique and have an interesting timbre. His growls however are your classic black vocals with an occasional grunt here and there, but what makes Orkan great is that Vintersorg uses them sparingly and in places where they make sense and don’t clutter the album.
Vintersorg’s Orkan is a brilliant album able to take parts black metal, parts folk, and parts experimental/progressive and blends them so well that it feels organic.
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6. Havets nåd