KVAEN - The Ancient Gods

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There are many great extreme metal bands in Sweden, but only one from Kalix. This remote beauty spot near the Finnish border, on the northernmost shores of the Baltic, is home to Jacob Björnfot, creative mastermind behind melodic black/death metal project, KVAEN.

Video production by Daniel Wahlström at Heavy Groove Media

A sumptuous but bitingly intense exploration of beauty and violence, KVAEN’s "The Formless Fires" is a melodic black metal masterwork radiating an inspirational sense of place. Even more than 2020’s folky, speed metal-infused debut "The Funeral Pyre" or 2022’s compelling, expansive follow-up, "The Great Below", the vast pine woods and icy lakes are powerfully evoked in the elemental gloom riffs, chilly melodies, and windswept solos running through these eight mighty songs.

Assisting in this record’s immersive sweep are Björnfot’s fascinating lyrics. Like many Swedish songwriters, his use of English reveals a love and care for the language that few native speakers even bother to rival. If this album seems less intimate and more universal than the raw candor of its predecessor, it’s only because Björnfot’s knack for allegory has improved. Illuminating some of the lyrical themes, Björnfot asserts “I love mythology. ‘Basilisk’ is, for example, the king of serpents but is rarely mentioned by the mainstream. ‘The Perpetual Darkness’ is about being born different from those who are ‘normal.’ It is also about being a lone wolf and banished from society. That song has become a personal favorite of mine.” Additionally, ‘De Dödas Sång (Song Of The Dead)’ tackles the disturbing theme of Ättestupa, the ancient Norse suicide ritual whereby elderly villagers jump to their deaths from sheer precipices.

KVAEN:
Jacob Björnfot – everything

KVAEN Live Lineup:
Jacob Björnfot – vocals/guitars
Kristian Gustavsson – guitars
Rasmus Rova – guitars
Per Lindström – bass
Fredrik Andersson – drums
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