It was 2010 when a band from Norway made their debut album. This CD, named after the band Kvelertak, totally blew me away and left me speechless. They skip the tradition of their country and they didn’t release a black metal album, though there are some black metal elements in it. The sextet from Stavanger raised the bar for them with their debut so the expectations were high for this one. And unfortunately we had to wait three years to listen to it.
When you put the CD and push the play, the anticipation grows more with the opening riff of “Ǻpenbaring”. What comes next has left me with mixed feelings. I did find myself a bit disappointed, but still I enjoyed each one auditions of “Meir”. The music of the first songs can easily declared as black ’n’ roll. You can listen to black blastbeats and on the opposite many groove rhythms on the main verses. So unmistakably you can feel your headbanging on the beautiful music of these guys on songs like “Spring Fra Livet” and “Trepan”.
After that we have one of the first songs that linked and air played on the YouTube. I must admit that “Bruane Brenn” is not of the standards that I had set for them. The songs that follow are a lot alike the aforementioned track. They have a bitter sweet melody. Of course that isn’t something bad; to be melodic. But they seem like a waste of space to me. The second video that was released is the next song “Månelyst” and it is probably the best song of the album. It has the proper melody and the proper groove and energy.
And then everything changes. Until now we had songs that didn’t go more than four minutes; short and straightforward. After “Nekrokosmos” the songs last at least six minutes. And this in my ears was a little bit wearing. Although there are many interesting and exciting parts, the duration of the songs really exhausted me. Especially the song called “Tordenbrak”, which have great riffing and could have been the best song on their career. Its duration exceeding the eight minutes is really tiresome and pointless. And something that makes it pointless is that I couldn’t understand a word of it. The lyrics are all written in their mother language and I am not Norwegian.
Above I analyze all the black spots of the CD and many could just turn their back on Kvelertak. But it is not the right thing to do. It is just my opinion on the album.
Overall the bitter sweet aftertaste that has for me the “Meir” album, I think it is because of my anticipation. Nonetheless the CD is full of energy and all the parts – guitar riffing, groovy rhythms on the drums and angry screams – fit perfect together and the giving result can defuse most of your anxieties. This is a very heavy and uplifting release. So if you are about to party, Kvelertak is still here and they won’t let you down.
* Read the interview with guitarist of the band Vidar Landa talking “Meir” here.
02. Spring Fra Livet
04. Bruane Brenn
05. Evig Vandrar
|Erlend Hjelvik – Vocals
Maciek Ofstad – Guitars
Bjarte Lund Rolland – Guitars
Vidar Landa – Guitars
Kjetil Gjermundrød – Drums
Marvin Nygaard – Bass