Battlelore - ...Where The Shadows Lie
Napalm Records
Epic Viking Black Metal
9 songs (47'05)
Release year: 2002
Battlelore, Napalm Records
Reviewed by Jack
When one hears about a Finnish heavy metal band, one thinks about gothic metal with the likes of Entwine, To Die For, Charon, Lullacry, or even Sentenced to name but a few. However, there are a lot of Finnish bands out there such as And Oceans, Catamenia, Finntroll, Gloomy Grim or Thy Serpent who don't play gothic metal at all. There is now a newcomer under the moniker of Battlelore. The band consists of seven members and two guest musicians. They have signed on Napalm Records which is known for gothic metal bands such as Sirenia and Tristania among others. However, Battlelore has nothing to do with the aforementioned bands. I hate to confine one band's music into one single style, (but that's what people want) so I would define Battlelore's music as some kind of epic fantasy viking metal reminding me sometimes of early Forlorn and Falkenbach mixed with doom and black metal elements.

Battlelore's lyrics are based upon the book The Lord Of The Rings by Tolkien. But, as I have mentioned several times, I don't focus much on lyrics. Besides, we all have read this book to know what it is all about. Like many bands, they mix growling and clean male vocals along
with female vocals. Of course there is nothing really new about this. I enjoy this kind of music very much with all songs consisting of mid-paced tempos with the use of keyboards creating instrumental atmospheric parts alternating with fast aggressive parts.

The main weak point about this release is the production. I think it's a little bit below the standards Napalm Records has accustomed us to. It lacks a bit of energy to really enable the band to impress us with this first release, especially on the sound of the drums. Some of the songs really deserve to be more elaborated, as they contain ingenious parts which are really lost in some of the average compostions.

The last songs is a hidden track, found at the end on the limited digipack edition. Nothing really to worry about if you only find the regular edition, as it is some sort of folk-like track played with classical guitar.

Despite what I have said above and although these guys will probably improve their stuff a lot on their next effort, this album really deserves the attention of everyone, whether you are a true metal, black metal, gothic metal or simply a metal fan, you will find something interesting on this release. However, I strongly recommend everyone listens to it many times as the album really improves after each listen.

Killing Songs :
The Grey Wizard, Journey To Undying Lands, Fangorn
Jack quoted 75 / 100
Other albums by Battlelore that we have reviewed:
Battlelore - Doombound reviewed by Jaime and quoted 79 / 100
Battlelore - Evernight reviewed by Kayla and quoted 84 / 100
Battlelore - Sword Song reviewed by Marty and quoted 80 / 100
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