Nearly three decades (man, I’m feeling my age at typing this) and 9 albums into life as KAMPFAR, the Norwegian black metal lifers have spent their career eschewing the satanic, the demonic, the “low hanging fruit” of a good many of their contemporaries, opting instead of tales of myth, folklore, true history, and how such can relate to society today. What were “myths” anyway, but a way for olden man to wrap his head around something in Nature – human included – that he couldn’t comprehend. From the first mythmaker, the first storyteller on, man has been seeking that wisdom, Odin-like, wandering.
‘Lausdans under stjernene’ ushers our ears into Til Klovers Takt, regal and breathtaking at once, more cinematic than a lowly “pagan black metal band” has any business being. Close your eyes, put on the headphones, and be literally swept into the tale. I’m a fiend for this style in general, yet rarely does anything approach terms like “captivating”, “enveloping”; yet here we are. My singular complaint is that this tune (and ‘Urkraft’, also found here) were released as a digital EP earlier in the year. Still and all, you can’t help but feel both in a truly visceral sense.
Anticipation arrives in the maniacal ‘Fandens Trall’, KAMPFAR frenzied and fanged, clawed and bloody-furred, every facet of this foursome in tune with one another in a way it’s so refreshing to hear this far into this incarnation. ‘Flammen fra Nord’ returns us to more theatric realms but is no less combustible. Leading with a quote from the King James Bible where John The Baptist heralds the coming of Christ, this is also the only song where we’ll hear lyrics not in the band’s mother tongue, but that’s just fine, so impassioned is every syllable delivered throughout.
‘Dødens aperitiff’ rallies the horde one final time, more generally mid-paced and layered in an album already dense as forests, as immersive an experience – when given the chance to be – as anything that’s been released this year, style be damned. Without a shred of falseness can I claim Til Klovers Takt as the pinnacle in a musical journey already full of peaks.
Review By: Lord Randall
Til Klovers Takt
6 / 6