Sunday, December 29, 2013

Year In RRReview - 2013

We would like to thank everyone that has visited our little blog in this inaugural year. I plan to on a yearly basis briefly go over some of our "top" reviews and review an album that was released in the year that we thought stood out from the rest.

Next month we will be putting out our sixteen artist article of "underground" electronic projects. You can preview all of these artists HERE.

Favorite Album 2013 - 'Runaljod - Yggdrasil' by Wardruna

Written by Ryan

Wardruna is a Norwegian music group that was founded in 2003 by multi-instrumentalist and composer, Einar Kvitrafn Selvik. After releasing their acclaimed debut, 'Runaljod - gap var Ginnunga' in 2009 Wardruna has released in 2013 their much anticipated follow-up, 'Runaljod - Yggdrasil'. Wardruna uses a unique array of instrumentation, recording, and production techniques to achieve their sound; incorporating complex and harmonious vocalizations, diversified and very well played folk instruments, computer sampling of field recordings, and what sounds like mild use of a soft synth. Wardruna also ties all of these elements into Nordic folklore and spiritualism, thus drawing inspiration from ancient knowledge and traditions.

Fehu leaps into a pounding rhythm and mesmerizing chant after a brief ambient prelude. Staggering vocal developments are made quickly, layering the groove with melodious increments. Drum propulsion evolves the song further, compelling the listener to move and sway about without care; which happens to be a common occurrence throughout 'Yggdrasil'. Solringen is a deeply touching and healing composition, opening with wood knocking, meditative drones, as well as a beautiful bird song. The preceding portion of the album seems to be a building up to this breaking down as a hopeful sense of melancholy pervades. The vocal crescendo haunts for a long time to come. 'Yggdrasil' concludes with Helvegen, a powerful song with perhaps the most complex musical arrangement provided. This track has a more prolonged ambient entrance compared to the rest of the album, featuring sounds of thunder, birds, and other natural ambiance along with what sounds like could be a soft synth from the computer program. Helvegen has the most diverse textures found throughout the album with a unique combination of ambiance, vocal harmony, and tribal drumming; building into an incredibly uplifting rhythm near the midpoint of the song and ending in a deeply contemplative vocal outro.

'Runaljod - Yggdrasil' is a truly enchanting and rejuvenating piece of music. The level of depth is near incomprehensible even to the most perceptive of music enthusiasts. Something about this album will lift your soul out of your body if listened to properly.

Top Reviews

Follow the embedded links for full reviews.


"Izalith is a music project based out of Seattle, Washington specializing in creating uniquely textured soundscapes and atmospheres. Their music flows in a very lucid way, engaging the listener and taking them on a journey through waves of sonic emotion. Featuring an array of musical techniques blended in a refreshing and satisfying way, Izalith’s music certainly does not come out and blurt its “message” in your face but rather expresses their meaning through a building, cascading, and relenting of subtleties. There is a certain dark quality about their music that conveys an almost disturbing pain, which becomes deeply resonate to the listener."

eleven tigers

"Eleven tigers is an electronic based music project from London, UK. The most recent release by this solo act slash collective project is the astonishing full length release entitled, 111. With this album, eleven tigers have created one of the more nuanced pieces of music in recent memory, composing a piece that is simply best described as real."

The Algorithm

"From Montpellier, France, THE ALGORITHM presents the album, Polymorphic Code. Combing numerous different modern music styles and production techniques, this record has a persistent and immersive flow that is heavily groove textured. Dynamic diversity reigns as the main staying point of this album, creating a level of textural atmosphere that brings the advanced level technology present on this album to the forefront of observation."

Monday, December 9, 2013


Can't say enough about the work being done with Wardruna. A combination of textural ambient with field recordings of nature, tribal rhythms, chanting (as well as singing), and Nordic folk/spiritualism based on the Elder Futhark Runes. The lead vocalist is Ghaal, formerly of Gorgoroth but don't let that make your mind up about what kind of sound you are about to hear.

Here is one of my favorites from Runaljod - Yggdrasil.

And the entire album.