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On disc: Valdur

Raven God Amongst Us - Mike Thompson - 9 stars

Raven God Amongst Us

Raven God Amongst Us
(BloodMountain Records - 2010)

Valdur is a US black metal band from California, here presenting their second full-length release Raven God Amongst Us. I've not heard Valdur before, but what I've read about them has been nothing but positive so I was eager to check out this album.
The band plays pagan black metal in a raw but bassy version of mid-to-fast-paced black metal with many overtones of Viking-era Bathory or . The music is quite mesmerizing as the band draw you into a world of Norse paganism with raw and yet oft-times melodic songs driven forward by the machine-like drumming of Lord Sxuperion.
The vocals provided by Norwegian native Thor are quite muted and low in the mix but not to the detriment of the music. He is fairly diverse though, utilizing a rasping black metal style and even death metal growls at times. The album also features some pagan chants that add to the powerful atmosphere created by the band.
William's bass rumbles along in the background lending the album a much needed powerful low-end. The bass is the final part of this mighty black metal triumvirate. They say good things come in threes and Valdur prove to be no exception to this universal truth!
Raven God Amongst Us is an awesome album from a talented band that has found its own niche within the growing USBM scene. This is one that will appeal to fans of raw black metal as well as, to a lesser extent, Viking metal fans. Hopefully this will be the breakthrough album for Valdur and we will only get bigger and better things from them from now on.

9 stars

Mike Thompson


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