Myrkur – Folkesange (Album Review)

When life hits a milestone, often a celebration or commemoration of that accomplishment is in order. In a musician’s career, this can come for a variety of exciting reasons, inspiring musical works encompassing the vibe and experience in its entirety. 

In the case of Amalie Bruun of Denmark’s own Myrkur, she brings into light a new breakthrough on the forthcoming album Folkesange. Set for release on Friday, March 20th, 2020 via Relapse Records, the latest work drops all elements of Black Metal she had mixed into her earlier works to focus on native folk culture and childhood Scandinavian heritage. The transition from child into mother may be quite the extended journey, but often it sneaks up in shocking and surprising ways as well. Interested yet? Read on. 

For those that dove into Myrkur with 2015’s M, a debut that possessed a wild combination of Black Metal screams that crescendos amidst melodic folklore, Folkesange is a polar opposite. What it does entail is the use of the ancient stylings of Kulning which is known as a Scandinavian herding call along with incorporating traditional instruments along its travels, such as the nyckelharpa, lyre, and mandola. All of this happens to be accomplished in a beautifully passionate and modern way.

The question is, will this be a temporary fluctuation for Myrkur, or will the future albums hold the same lack in the Black Metal department? That remains to be seen, but despite the backlash of the mixed genre to some fans of the old school Black Metal genre, it is also groundbreaking to others to combine such opposite elements in a very tastefully vulnerable way. Regardless of all of the above, Myrkur is doing what Myrkur needs to do for Myrkur in 2020, and this concept holds no weakness. In fact, the perfection in the pitch of vocals throughout songs like “Ella,” “Ramund,” “Svea,” and “Vinter” to name a few, are enough to keep true fans intrigued.

With the album sung all in Danish, and transcending the hillsides into a folkloric lullaby that could calm the most rabid beast, “Fokesange” wins the hearts of those who appreciate the olden times brought into modern light. Then, towards the end of the album, one of the softest and sweetest tunes, “Gudernes Vilje,” churns the mind into a gently submissive state. Finally, the last track “Vinter” translates to winter, exemplifying the darkest connotations, while still airing a peaceful vibe. The irony is that the very same peaceful tonality could work as an excellent climax in a twisted Horror movie.

The moral of the musical storytelling is basically that artistic interpretation is everything as well as nothing. No matter the artistic intention with the album Folkesange, the feeling of content and serenity is alive and kicking. Myrkur’s passionate infrastructure behind the album leads the way into a bright future that may sway back into the inevitable darkness when granted appropriate passage. All elements considered, Cryptic Rock Folkesange 4.5 out of 5 stars. 

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