January 27, 2016

Satan's Fall - Seven Nights / Tyfon's Doom - Yeth Hound

By Andy Osborn.

Finland has a complicated history with heavy metal. While it’s clear Oz’s 1983 classic Fire In The Brain was the birth of the genre in the country, few bands kept the tradition alive over the next couple of decades. Sure, groups like, Lordi, Apocalyptica, and Tarot held a certain appeal, but their popularity can hardly be attributed to their songwriting skills as they largely relied on gimmicks to win their fans. With few heroes to look to, the genre was largely ignored and Power, Death and Black metal largely captured the nation’s attention. But a few years ago something changed. A new breed of heavy metal youngsters started to appear and start paying homage to the glory days of old. Bands like Speedtrap, Lord Fist, Aktor, and Ranger proved that Finnish heavy metal never died, it simply went dormant.

So I’m excited to report that the movement those bands started lives on in 2016. This month, two short releases stand out that that prove the scene is growing ever stronger is Finland. Both - named after the trials of evil deities - keep the fire alive with tricks that are both familiar and exciting.

Satan’s Fall’s Seven Nights Demo is a quick foray into what makes classic heavy metal so enjoyable. With a charismatic lead singer, deft songwriting chops and memorable hooks, it’s a very promising start for this brand-new band. “Poisonhead” is a world-class rocker of a tune, with fiery leads constantly playing off of each other - it’s clear they have have a classic guitar duo in the making. It’s short, to the point, and impressive; everything a demo needs to be to get the attention of the world.

Living in the same fantasy realm, but in a class of their own, Typhon’s Doom occupy the land home to heroes like Manilla Road - meaning they’re a scrappy band of traditionalists who aren’t necessarily the most technically proficient or or concerned with a slick production. Their charm comes from their dedication to the craft and the fun atmosphere they’re able to produce with a relatively small sound. The eight-minute epic “Gate to a New Reality” is the perfect example of this. It relies on a brilliant galloping riff that twists and churns throughout the song and gives a sense of adventure and might to the track that few bands can achieve. It’s a perfect nostalgia trip for those seeking old sounds, but still wanting something new.

Both bands are brilliant in their own way and have clearly done their homework. The fundamentals of guitar-oriented badassery are omnipresent in their work - and that’s what heavy metal is all about. It may be just a small taste of what the country has to offer, but combined with other recent outputs, it’s a sure sign a new age of heavy metal is bursting forth in the land where it seems all other genres reign supreme.

Full Disclosure: Andy is now an employee of Bandcamp, but he swears on all that is unholy his recommendations come with only the best intentions for the bands in mind and not the company’s bottom line.