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Album Review

German multi-instrumentalist Markus Tümmers makes lightly blackened folk-metal under the name Falkenbach; on some of his early records, it was a one-man show, but on 2005's Heralding the Fireblade and this album, session musicians round out the lineup. The six years between releases haven't changed his style much at all; the music has the rolling, tumbling-forward feel of most folk-metal, with softly fuzzed guitars providing a steady rhythmic base as bagpipe-like lead lines (and keyboards) create the melodies; the lyrics are chanted in a sing-song fashion thay gets goofy sometimes, and there's a bit of repetition on the chorus of "…Where His Ravens Fly…" that will remind many listeners of the theme song to Gilligan's Island. The biggest problem with the songs on Tiurida is that they're somewhat harmonically and structurally static. They start out doing one thing, and they keep doing it for seven minutes at a stretch, with no solos or other adornments to provide catharsis or crescendo. There are some interesting instrumental textures here, like the flutes that show up on "Tanfana," but overall, this music won't do much for metalheads who prefer their metal aggressive and/or crushingly heavy, rather than ritualistic and midtempo.


Genre: Metal

Years Active: '00s, '10s

Falkenbach is the one-man black metal project of multi-instrumentalist Vratyas Vakyas (formerly guitarist with Crimson Gates), who is based in Düsseldorf, Germany, but reportedly hails from Iceland, and subscribes to the genre's more epic style, rife with keyboards, Viking themes, and folk music tendencies (a possible reason for making up those unconfirmed Icelandic roots). Active under the Falkenbach alias since 1995, when no less than three demos suddenly emerged (Laeknishendr, Skinn Av Sverdhi...
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Tiurida, Falkenbach
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