DECEMBER 10th 2013
TYR: VALKYRJA

Review by Metal Mom

Heri Joensen: Vocals, Guitars
Terji Skibenæs: Guitars
Gunnar H. Thomsen: Bass

Hometown: Faroe Islands

Record Label:  Metal Blade Records

And so in 999 A.D., the Christianization of the small “Faeroe Islands” began and
exactly 999 years later, a small group decided to come together (1998) to remember the archaic gods and rites and form the Faroese viking metal band, TÝR. In September they  released their 7th album “Valkyrja”, it’s also a concept album, based roughly around an unheard of viking age warrior.

The album was recorded at Hansen Studios, Ribe, Denmark with Jacob Hansen (Volbeat, Aborted, Mercenary) handling production/mixing and mastering. Týr commissioned George Kollias (Nile, Nightfall), one of metals accomplished drummers for this album. Special guest Eyes vocalist Liv Kristine joined vocalist/guitarist Heri Joensen for a vocal duet on “The Lay of Our Love.”

A year before the release date, the band began writing guitars and drums for the new album, with the melody and arrangements handled at the studio. The drumming skills of George Kollias are impressive to say the least, committing to major energy on the kit. What you are also going to hear is some frenzied guitar riffing from Terji, amazing work. And Gunnar’s individual bass sound, with a balance of assault and melody is phenomenal. Lets not forget the vocals, which in my opinion stand alone, with such variety and skill, making for an unforgettable album, it’s a little more upbeat, but still has that TÝR sound. Now I am curious because I am a huge Iron Maiden fan, so didn’t expect to enjoy Týr’s version of “Where Eagles Dare”, but they shine on this one, giving it their own version with a hint of the older one. Excellent job. Their second cover is a Pantera song, “Cemetery Gates”, I am still not sure about this one, I am so used to the Pantera version, but credit goes to Týr for even attempting this. Don’t get me wrong, they did a superb job of creating their own style on Cemetery Gates, and really after listening to it a few more times, I really did enjoy what they accomplished with it. So in other words, I did enjoy it. Doing covers can be tricky, as you have the original in your mind, but if you can get past that, these guys do a stunning job. There is also a song on this album you need to check out, its one that is intense, with haunting vocals from the talented Liv Kristine (Leaves’ Eyes, ex-Theatre of  Tragedy) - The Lay of Our Love. Beautifully done.

Track Listings:
 1. Blood of Heroes
 2. Mare of My Night
 3. Hel Hath No Fury
 4. The Lay of Our Love
 5. Nation
 6. Another Fallen Brother
 7. Grindavísan
 8. Into the Sky
 9. Fánar Burtur Brandaljóð
10. Lady of the Slain
11. Valkyrja
12. Where Eagles Dare (Iron Maiden cover)
13. Cemetery Gates (Pantera cover)

If you have always been a fan of Týr, this album “Valkyria” will only confirm the talent behind the band. And if you have not heard of the band before, then it’s time you became a fan, just listen to this album, and you will see what I mean. This one has gone beyond showing their talent and musical capability. This for me, is their best to date.