Genre: Melodic Death Metal
Country: Sweden
Label: Art Gates Records
Year: 2021

I will begin, saying this: at the moment I am writing this text, I am as excited as a I can possibly be. It was of great joy, after getting in touch with the label, to be sent Havamal’s new album “The Shadow Chapter” for a review. I must say that I found out about the band by accident, via youtube’s recommended videos and I am super happy for that of course. Since I listened to the first song in that video I found, I simply loved them and talking to the band directly, I found out that besides being an awesome band, they are also good people, all of them. So to the band… Havamal exist since 2016 and “The Shadow Chapter” is their 2nd full length album, along with an EP from 2017 and their 1st album in 2019. Let’s dive into it…

Do you want to travel through Scandinavia’s frozen fjords? Do you need to close your eyes and see in front of you hordes of berserk Vikings getting ready for yet one more raid? Do you want to see the majestic Drakkars fighting with the waves and their crew trying to get away from Kraken’s “claws” (wll tentacles to be precise)? Search no more! What you need to do, is just listen to this album! With just 2 albums, Havamal have achieved what other bands are trying throughout an entire discography. “Dressing” their music with majestic and “big” keyboards and heavy guitars, they can deliver to the listener, their message, which is the sole reason they were created for. Glorious battles, frozen mountains, mythology and with every song, they are taking us with them to a journey through the times when Vikings ruled the world and they were the terror and fear in every stranger’s soul.

Talking about the songs arrangements, things are simple here. Every guitar note, every snare hit, every syllable is placed exactly where it should be. It shows that they worked A LOT for this album and of course they must be honored by that. Sound wise, everything is clean, well-polished, without it sounding plastic and fake and in 48 minutes and 9 songs (8 + the intro which you MUST listen to, to find out how it will get you inside their world in just the first seconds), Havamal, talking about me, they managed to win me over. Ok they have managed it even since their first EP “Call of the North”, but with this album it was validated and they are one of my all-time favorite bands.

I will end this review saying that you must run and get this album when it is out (on the 21st of May). The friends of the epic/viking/pagan/folk or whatever else you want to call it Sweden’s scene, it is just what you were waiting for! Those who don’t know them? I expect that reading this, you will go, listen, buy this album and become a loyal Havamal’s fan.