Týr

Land

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AllMusic Review by

Hailing from the Faeroe Islands, an autonomous province of the Kingdom of Denmark with strong ties to the Scandinavian Peninsula, Týr's meticulous brand of progressive folk-metal is as pure as fresh blood on snow. Four albums in, the band has assumed such control of its sound that it's hard to lump them in with any of their Viking metal peers. Thematically the band draws on familiar heroic Nordic themes, but they invoke a musicality that has more in common with Rush and Opeth than it does Turisas and Korpiklaani -- fans expecting long-winded, orchestral keyboard segments will be disappointed. That said, rousing battle hymns are a prominent aspect of Land, a ten-song, highly melodic juggernaut of Norse brutality that is as taut and clinical as it is glorious and epic. Much of this has to do with Týr mastermind Heri Joensen's clear and even vocal delivery (sung in both English and the quartet's native Faroese), an icy tone he dutifully replicates on guitar with co-shredder Terji Skibenaes. Like most metal of this caliber, Land requires multiple listens before the exceedingly complex, yet reliably circular melodies reveal themselves (the title track and "Ocean" alone take up nearly 30 minutes), but stand-out cuts like "Sinklars Vísa," "Gáturíma," and "Brennivín" require a mere chorus to sink the hooks in, gut you, and throw your scraps to the gulls. [Land is also available in a two-disc version that includes a live DVD].

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