Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Moonsorrow Discography

Band History:

Moonsorrow is a self-described "
epic heathen metal" band that formed in Helsinki, Finland in 1995. To date they have currently released 4 Demo's (2 of which I still can't find), 6 LP's (studio albums) and 1 EP. Moonsorrow's earliest formation consisted of cousins Ville Sorvali (vocals and bass) and Henri Sorvali (guitar and keyboards). Together they released 4 demos which were of a melodic black metal sound. In 2001 they released Suden Uni, which helped to form the bands sound which consisted of Finnish paganism lyrical themes as well as folk instrumentals. Shortly after the albums release they hired
Mitja Harvilahti (Guitar and harsh and backing vocals) and Markus Eurén (keyboards and backing vocals) to complete there lineup. The follow up to Suden Uni, Voimasta Ja Kunniasta would be released in the same year and offer even more folk elements. This helped them to solidify a more diverse sound than there previous album which in part was due to the full lineup. With the full lineup they started doing live shows and really began to refine their sound as they were further striving away from the blackened sound that was present at the bands inception. There coming out party would be in 2003 when they released Kivenkantaja. This band was done ripening and they really began to take advantage their epic folk niche. It was only until the release of Verisäkeet in 2005 when they would incorporate ambient sounds to add to there already vast toolbox. In 2007 they released Viides Luku – Hävitetty (officially known as V: Hävitetty) and further pushed the envelope with song length. Both songs over 25 minutes were organic and gradually built upon to a climax just as there earlier work. The main difference with this album from their other was it felt like you were sitting in on a jam session with these guys, which I really enjoyed. Though this album though still included there iconic folk elements the band opted for a more prominent black metal sound as from there earlier years. In 2008 they released the EP Tulimyrsky which featured one song. Though in true Moonsorrow fashion it was a 30 minute track. The song features 9 chapters and deviates in each chapter from brutal black metal to acoustic folk rhythms. Also the album featured two covers (For Whom The Bell Tolls is better than the Metallica version in my opinion) and two re-recorded tracks from their earlier demos. I quite enjoyed the musical diversity in this album as it felt quite fresh, though at times I felt myself missing the sound that made them Moonsorrow. In 2011 they released Varjoina Kuljemme Kuolleiden Maassa and it was in the same vein as the EP, Tulimyrsky. Though admittedly not my favourite album because of the comparison to there other body of work, I did enjoy it. Hopefully later down the line they will pay credence to there previous folkish ways.


At the first listen
(untrained ears at the time), Moonsorrow comes off as all over the place. Suden Uni must of sat in my mp3 player for a good 3 months before I finally took a good listen and the bombastic ballads, folksy rhythm and riffing blew me away. This band can be off putting to some (even myself at first) as there songs are very long (think rush's 2112). At first listen it isn't like any folk/viking metal you've heard before as they are always trying to push the musical evolutionary envelope. It can be quite simply overwhelming as they capture the bands pure emotion and each track takes time to digest (best done with Doritos). The tracks quickly began to get stuck in your head and luckily this band had enough of a music library at the time I got into them to satisfy my Moonsorrow needs. They are a true power house in the genre for good reason and with a new album just released this year we are in for a wait unfortunately.

Album Quality:

Metsä (Demo) (1997) - V0 MP3 / VBR
Tämä Ikuinen Talvi (Demo) (1999) - V0 MP3 / VBR
Suden Uni (2001) - V0 MP3 / VBR
Voimasta Ja Kunniasta (2001) - V0 MP3 / VBR
Kivenkantaja (2003) - V0 MP3 / VBR
Verisäkeet (2005) - V0 MP3 / VBR
V: Hävitetty (2007) - V0 MP3 / VBR
Tulimyrsky (EP) (2008) - V0 MP3 / VBR
Varjoina Kuljemme Kuolleiden Maassa (2011) - V0 MP3 / VBR
Live In Annecy (Bootleg) (2007) - V2 MP3 / VBR