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Unleashed – Odalheim – Album Review

Unleashed – Odalheim – Album Review
Website: http://www.unleashed.se
Fans Of: Asphyx, Nile, Vomitory
Label: Nuclear Blast
Download This: Fimbulwinter
Genre(s): Death Metal
Release Date: 20/04/12

Warriors battling to the death throughout time. No, this isn’t Deadliest Warrior (the most bad-ass show on TV). This is the theme of one of the most satisfying death metal albums of the year – Unleashed’s Odalheim. While Unleashed has given us so many great albums over the years, this one is as unrelenting as a Viking longboat – and doesn’t let up until all is laid to waste!

The musicianship on Odalheim is outstanding. While the passion that shines through after more than 10 albums is impressive, it’s their attention to detail that makes this stand out.

This is evident in the opener, ‘Fimbulwinter’ – a song that trades blast beats with thrashy riffs, slows down and then builds into a crescendo of guitar wizardry. The variety exhibited is appreciated in a world where non-stop bludgeoning comes a dime a dozen.

And sticking to the warrior theme, let’s face it – the all-out assault theory works sometimes, but you need to master many disciplines to be truly great. The epic ‘The Hour of Defeat’ talks to the fact that sometimes, you need to regroup and fight another day. If you are a student of warfare, Odalheim rewards the listener with rousing tales of everything from Old World wars (‘By Celtic and British Shores’) to New World attacks (‘Rise of the Maya Warriors’). Hedlund’s vocals are as inspiring as they are menacing.

The diversity of the music is refreshing. Unleashed sprinkle’s black metal blasting among the death, giving it great atmosphere. I know It’s late in the review, but there are some of the best solos I’ve heard in quite a while on Odalheim. Olsson and Folkare wield their guitars like broadswords or the mighty Mjolnir; each weapon honed to perfection.

This is my favorite Unleashed album since Sworn Allegiance. When the End Times come, I can go to Valhalla fulfilled.

Track Listing

01 – Fimbulwinter
02 – Odalheim
03 – White Christ
04 – The Hour Of Defeat
05 – Gathering The Battalions
06 – Vinland
07 – Rise Of The Maya Warriors
08 – By Celtic And British Shores
09 – The Soil Of Our Fathers
10 – Germania
11 – The Great Battle Of Odalheim