Link: Leaves’ Eyes
The Inside Pulse:
Known most for her work with Theater of Tragedy and on the last Cradle of Filth disc, Liv Kristine’s soaring vocals are showcased on the sophomore disc by Leaves’ Eyes. The rest of the band is Atrocity; oddly enough, Liv is married to the vocalist of that band. Insert jokes about being pussy-whipped here. Regardless of marital ties, Leaves’ Eyes’ debut was a soaring disc of symphonic folk metal showcasing Liv’s lush semi-operatic voice coupled with husband Alexander’s death growls. Vinland Saga brings this sound back with more focus on both Liv and Norwegian folklore. The “soaring” element has been expanded into full-on grandeur; while there’s plenty of metal still present, the album also seems to have backed off on the heaviness. It’s a completely different aesthetic from your typical Scandinavian metal band and the whole picture works well.
This is an album. There’s a graceful atmosphere, emotional manipulation with strong building and slow fading, and generally a lovely venture into what it means to be a Norwegian who loves their country’s past.
Their debut disc was better, period. They seem to be absolutely fixated on creating something “pretty,” which wears thin when you’re looking for the perfect metal break to fill a lull. Also, so many songs just sort of end with no denouement, leaving them sounding unfinished.
Nightwish mixed with a Norweigan version of the Pogues, perhaps?
Reason to buy:
To feel the power of the vikings, even when you want to relax a bit.