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Graveland – Memory And Destiny


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Graveland, these days only consisting of Rob Darken, have certainly come a long way, from their ultra-grim beginnings in their demo days and ‘In the Glare of Burning Churches’ to an album like ‘Memory And Destiny’. The development or change is as massive as between the Bathory debut and ‘Hammerheart’, an album which is stylistically close to recent Graveland material. ‘Memory And Destiny’ does not sound radically different from ‘Creed of Iron’. Sure, the production here is slightly sharper, and you can find a couple more hooks but that's about it. So, for those who are not familiar with present day Graveland, how do they sound? This is a fusion of Celtic/Pagan melodies and riffs with a dominant overlay of bombastic choir and keyboard soundscapes, comparable to the soundtrack of the first Conan movie, and a good dose of Viking metal. Fortunately, Rob Darken has not made the move towards 'real' vocals, and his trademark rasp is still in place and as recognizable as ever. The songs usually have a length of around 10 minutes and the main themes are sustained which generates a sense of timelessness and trance as if on a sheer endless march in military formation. For those familiar with the black and white movies of pioneering Russian movie director Sergei Eisenstein ‘Memory And Destiny’ could be the perfect soundtrack when armoured knights meet in battle on Russia's endless plains and unstoppable armies celebrate another victory. While probably too long, boring, not grim and metal enough for some, these recent Graveland records are vivid images of times long forgotten turned into sound. Tracklist: 1. Fate of Warrior 2. Jewel of Atlanteans 3. Memory And Destiny 4. Legion of Giants 5. Runes of Rise

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