Heavy Metal Viking Style: Amon Amarth

Throughout its history, heavy metal was a beautiful and pristine thing. Bands of burly dudes with long, unkempt hair sung about important topics like slaying dragons, chasing women, and partying. Then, at some point during the 1990s, the cancer of nu metal started to metastasize in the powerful body of the metal gods. Bands started singing about relationships and their feelings in an effort to gain mainstream popularity and get played on MTV. Were not talking about an obligatory power ballad here and there”some bands sung about nothing else than how miserable they were and how sad they were over a failed relationship. Some bands even resorted to such gimmicks as grooming themselves. This shouldnt be confused with the hair metal era when bands like Motley Crue were wearing makeup and platform heels”the bands were more in to carefully groomed goatees and other sissy like pandering to their feminine fanbase.

Fortunately, the cancerous tumor in the body of heavy metal is now in remission and the tide is turning back. Part of the cure has blown across the Norse sea like a cold winter monsoon and has now reached American shores. Amon Amarth is a band from Tumba, Sweden founded in 1992 who are the latest”and most commercially successful”proponent of a genre known as Viking metal. As the name implies, bands from the Viking metal genre sing about important topics such as sailing, lusting for adventure and conquest, furious winds and treacherous seas. Viking metal bands are too busy metaphorically conquering and pillaging to worry about such trivialities as their feelings, let alone grooming themselves.

Amon Amarth took their name from a location in J.R.R. Tolkiens Middle Earth, and their name means Mount Doom in the Elvish language of Sindarin. Mount Doom would have been a decent name in itself, but its roots in Tolkiens sword and sorcery classic makes it all the better. Their first demo release, The Arrival of the Fimbul Winter, set the thematic tone for their work to come. Drawing musical inspiration from bands such as Bolt Thrower and their Viking metal predecessors Bathory and Enslaved, who in turn took their cue from the great American band Manowar, Amon Amarth plays their own unique style of melodic death metal. While they are hesitant to claim the Viking metal mantle for their own, they take most of their lyrical content from Viking history and Norse mythology.

2004s Fate of Norns and 2006s With Oden On Our Side earned the band considerable popularity all over the world, including North America where they have toured several times as a headline act.

Amon Amarth recently extended their deal with Metal Blade records, and released their latest album ‘Twilight of the Thunder God’ in September 2008. The album quickly became the best selling release of their career, and was met with critical acclaim from the heavy metal media worldwide.

Heavy metal is gaining strength and resuming its powerful greatness under the marauding sound of Amon Amarth. The band tours constantly, and their powerful live show has earned them a reputation as one of the ‘must see’ concert acts. In 2006, they released a DVD entitled ‘Wrath of the Norsemen’ that brings their live experience to home TV screens.

Ross Everett is a freelance sports writer and noted authority on Uk marriage visa World Cup betting. His writing has appeared on a variety of sports sites including sports news and Uk marriage visa sportsbook directory sites. He lives in Las Vegas with three Jack Russell Terriers and an emu. He is currently working on an autobiography of former energy secretary Donald Hodell.

categories: heavy metal,rock music,Swedish music,music,pop culture,entertainment,marketing

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