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Immortalizer

Valient Thorr

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Album Review

Valient Thorr were extraordinarily busy in the two Earth years separating their third and fourth albums, reportedly logging more than 500 shows, welcoming new guitarist Voiden Thorr into the fold, and losing one kidney — donated by frontman Valient Himself (normally known for spleen venting) to his ailing father. His Earth father, that is...for, you see, the North Carolina-based musicians still insist that they actually hail from the planet Venus — even though their epic fourth effort, 2008's Immortalizer, proves once again that at least their musical influences derive from very earthly (and earthy) touchstones such as AC/DC, Thin Lizzy, and especially the MC5, from whom they channel not only their quasi-religious gonzo rock revival, but also the rebellious spirit fueling their alternately fantasy-laced and brazenly political lyrics. Hey, maybe the MC5 were from Venus, too! In any case, Immortalizer may just be Valient Thorr's heaviest album yet — both sonically and thematically — as the band regularly launches into enraged anthems against oppression like "I Hope the Ghosts of the Dead Haunt Yr Soul Forever," "Mask of Sanity," and "Nomadic Sacrifice," with even more verve and bile than on previous releases. Valient Himself also treads far more allegorical pathways throughout Immortalizer, frequently masking his overt paranoia on nevertheless caustic indictments like "Steeplechase," "Tackle the Walrus," and album highlight "Parable of Daedalus" (which boasts a main riff sequence reminiscent of Rainbow and what is arguably the best of many guitar solo duels found here), among others.

Additional standouts include the time-traveling mix of science fiction imagery and down-and-dirty retro hard rock heard on "Tomorrow Police" (which owes much to AC/DC); the stream-of-consciousness hilarity and liquid guitar licks of "No Holds Barred" (setting off sparks of vintage Ted Nugent); and the space blues interlude "Vernal Equinox," which somehow makes acoustic guitars sound like instruments from another, twilight dimension. But the album's emotional centerpiece may just be the apocalyptic "1000 Winters in a Row," which spells out a virtual distillation of Valient Thorr's decidedly altered state for social activism thusly: "Do you really believe the flashes coming from your television are relevant pieces of information? Do you think that there is any way whatsoever that one person can make a difference in this world? In This Time? In this place? In this reality? IS THIS REALITY?" And it's with recurring, unexpected twists such as this that Valient Thorr continue to distinguish themselves and their music from the generalized hard rock masses, achieving in Immortalizer an album that just may stand the test of time across all planets of the solar system.

Customer Reviews

Brilliant

Great record from the hardest working metal band on the circuit.  The riffs are tight and the lyrics are brilliant. Never heard a better song about professional wrestling than "No Holds Barred".  "Red Flag" and "Tackle the Walrus" are my faves on the record. Excellent workout tunes. See 'em live if you can.

Immortalizer by Valient Thorr

I saw this band open up this spring for Mastodon. The show began at 6:30 p.m. and I was not familiar with any of the opening acts. I knew they would probably all be good so I got there in time to see the first act, Valient Thorr. I am glad I did. These guys kicked a*s. They played several songs from this c.d. I love Mastodon but also glad to see some bands giving 100% in a live show, jumping around and sweating profusly. Good old school style rock and roll with a great back beat. Fast with a lot of quick, tight breaks that get you going. If you listen to this in your car, you'll be mashing the accelerator. Put on at 5:00 p.m. on a Friday right after work and you'll be reved up for the weekend.

Biography

Formed: 2001 in Chapel Hill, NC

Genre: Rock

Years Active: '00s, '10s

According to frontman Valient Himself, hard-rocking metal outfit Valient Thorr were birthed on the planet Venus several millennia ago, hopscotching across the space-time continuum before finally arriving on Earth in 1957. Upon crashing in North Carolina, their time-travel machine was stolen by Walt Disney, and so the group (guitarists Eidan Thorr and Odinn Thorr, bassist Dr. Professor Nitewolf Strangees, and drummer Lucian Thorr) remains here to rock while seeking the means to return home. Valient...
Full Bio
Immortalizer, Valient Thorr
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