Kvelertak is one of the most interesting bands to burst onto the metal scene in recent years. While being rooted in hardcore punk, they draw from a number of influences ranging from black metal to hard rock. Might seem like a bit of a weird combination to some, but Kvelertak make it worth your while. Meir is the band’s second full-length album, following their self-titled album that was released in 2010.
With their second album, Kvelertak more or less follow the same formula as the self-titled, but up the anti even more. When I say that I mean that this release seems even more intense and engaging than the last one. For example, the black metal influence is definitely more noticeable on Meir. Just listen to the end of the eight track Nekrokosmos. While it doesn’t fully embrace the cold atmosphere of a black metal song, you still get a dark vibe from the tremolo picked guitars and the blast beats of the drums.
Just because the black metal influences are a little more prominent here doesn’t mean that these guys forgot how to have fun. The majority of the album is still fun, upbeat, and melodic hardcore. Kvelertak really know how to bring the energy and intensity to their music and they specialize in getting the listener involved. It’s just riffs upon riffs, catchy ones that will be stuck in your head long after you’re done listening to the album and they just never let up. The vocals are pretty diverse as well, not to mention extremely well executed. Either you’re gonna get a throaty, semi-high pitched hardcore type of roar, or you’re gonna get a demented screech that sounds like it could’ve come from someone like Ihsahn or Ghaal.
While other melodic hardcore bands such as Modern Life is War and More Than Life give off a darker more melancholic feeling, Kvelertak do a complete 360 and I can guarantee you won’t find a band that plays music that is more uplifting than these guys. If you’re feeling down, throw this album on and I bet it gets your head banging and your spirits lifted.