Band: Wolfhorde
Album: Towards The Gates of North
Release Date: 22.01.2016
Record Label: Inverse Records 
Genre: Folk Metal

Wolfhorde is a Finnish folk metal band. Formed in 2000, the band delivers music that is composed of the opposites: distorted and clean,electric and acoustic, heavy and soft, fast and slow, cheerful and melancholic so the listeners can expect some twists and turns. The band is back with “Towards The Gates of North” which will be released in a few days!

“Towards The Gates of North” caught my attention from the first song “Vegvisir” as I didn’t expect such a traditional/folkish – or even maybe ‘Finnish’- start, which I liked a lot! As a matter of fact, this style of the band can be heard in certain songs like “Death Long-Due” and the last song “The Gates of North” and I found this approach quite clever as this makes the band unique and surely fits to the band’s character a lot! The shamanic style is not the only one that we hear in the album though. Throughout the record, the band delivers variety of styles such as folk metal (“Unyielding”) and elements from melodic death and pagan metal (“Lycomania”, “Boundless Agony”… love the Finnish vocals in that song!) which is highlighted in the harsh vocals and the melodies. As much as I liked the harmony of these different styles, they did not mesmerize me as much as that ‘shamanic/natural’ sound of the band. But I can understand why the band wanted to maybe deliver a few styles; diversity and the harmony of different styles is always good and makes the record more catchy.

Soundwise, the album is quite melodic but also ‘brutal’. Harsh vocals make a great harmony with those guitar riffs (which we hear more in the second half of the album). I can also say that I found the ‘ideas’ and the melodies really nice and clever; surely there are influences from some bigger names but the potential of the band is there for sure!

Despite these great points, there are some aspects that can be improved. Firstly, I found the vocals a bit too weak; for a record like this, I would expect even more epic and stronger vocals but maybe the band wanted to emphasize on the melodies and the riffs so these two elements do appear stronger in the album. Secondly, as much as I like the diversity and the blend of the styles in the record, I hope that the band will find their own character/style in the future and go in that direction. I see a great potential in Wolfhorde and I am sure they will keep on improving!

Rating: 7,5/10

1. Vegvísir
2. Fimbulvetr
3. Taivaankappaleiden Kato
4. Death Long-Due
5. The Retribution
6. Unyielding
7. Boundless Agony
8. Lycomania
9. The Gates of North

Werihukka – guitar, other instruments
Hukkapätkä – vocals, drums
Nuoskajalka – bass

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