REVIEW: Ensiferum - "Unsung Heroes"
Unsung Heroes starts off with a beautiful instrumental which has a very mellow tone to it. It sets up the album very well, being so peaceful at the start yet growing throughout. My favorite chorus on the album is actually in the very first song, “In My Sword I Trust”, and is probably exactly what you’re thinking it sounds like. Nice layered vocals chanting “in my sword I trust…” and given the band’s name literally means “Sword Bearer”, would you expect anything less? A little too cheesy for you? Then you shouldn’t be listening to folk metal! The clean vocals in this track are fantastic and the riffs and drums are galloping and hard to ignore… definitely understandable why the band chose this track as their first single.
The beginning half of the album is definitely the best, they put their strongest foot first. Each song features each band member very well, showing off their honed skills individually. As the album goes on however I feel it does lose its momentum as the songs impress me less and less. The last song is a 17-minute long epic (which I believe to be a new record for the band) that has beautiful moments, but also has a few awkward moments mixed in… like with the voice over. It’s a great concept I just wish the recording sounded a bit more rounded and less like it was recorded in a closet. There is a “phaser” effect throughout this song that really throws me off and makes me uncertain of what the goal was.
There are moments in this album where I feel completely lost in another, more beautiful, world than ours, and then there are moments where I’m not quite sure what the band was trying to accomplish. All in all though, a great release. This band has managed to release album after album getting rave reviews, and this one should be no exception. As a huge fan of power metal I am definitely excited to see where this band goes in the future. If as I’m predicting they take on a more melodic sound, they will definitely have sunken their metal teeth under my skin, and will have a fan hooked for life.
2. In My Sword I Trust
3. Unsung Heroes
4. Burning Leaves
5. Celestial Bond
6. Retribution Shall Be Mine
7. Star Queen (Celestial Bond part II)
9. Last Breath
10. Passion Proof Power
Markus Toivonen - Guitars, Backing Vocals, Clean Vocals
Sami Hinkka - Bass, Backing Vocals, Clean Vocals
Petri Lindroos - Harsh Vocals, Guitars
Janne Parviainen - Drums
Emmi Silvennoinen - Keyboards, Backing Vocals