It’s an exciting time to be a listener of Norwegian extreme metal again. So many great records have been released over the past number of months that originated in the lands of captivating fjords, untouched snowcapped mountains and children’s tales that have been miraculously turned into Disney brands. But you know what, my kids like those Disney brands, their father likes the extreme metal, so engaging in Norwegian cultural exports has become a family affair.
From the northern regions of Norway, in one of the last major cities you get to before entering the worlds dominated by the polar bear, the walrus, the arctic fox and Olaf’s summer hideaway (look I have two pre-school girls so this is my world, ok?) you’ll find Trondheim’s Whoredom Rife. After an impressive and eye-opening EP. Their first full length record is now out and it’s clear the band is firmly entrenched to bring their True Norwegian Black Metal to the global scene. Featuring the layered tremolo guitars, traditional Norwegian black metal vocals, and drums that rival the mid career Immortal records, their June release entitled Dommedagskvad doesn’t disappoint those looking for an escape from the metalcore nonsense dominating the playlists at SiriusXM.
Featuring V. Einride on all instruments and newcomer K.R. on vocals, the duo puts together a debut LP that everyone outside of Greenpoint and Williamsburg is talking about. Standout track for me is “Beyond the Skies of God,” which has a slow, mood invoking lead in called “Bells of Doom.” “Beyond…” has a lot of twists and turns that make the cut an interesting listen. It’s raw in places yet also polished with clear musicianship and arranging that demonstrate how Whoredom Rife is much more than another Darkthrone clone making the rounds among the Maryland crusties. Rather, Whoredom Rife gives listeners much more to offer yet maintains the energy and anger found in today’s speed-inspired genres.
After the intro track, listeners are subjected to a punishing six songs that will surely satisfy your need for 90’s True Norwegian nostalgia. But unlike a lot of those early records, this one is recorded in a way that makes for a more nuanced (and better quality) listen. Songs like “Winged Assassin” will bring you back to the early Oslo scene and “Svik” is some straight up speed metal. The LP finishes with the well-orchestrated “Pilgrim” which gives the listener a nice acoustic guitar coda to wind things down.
Whoredom Rife will be playing Beyond the Gates in Bergen in August and this is one of the bands I’m most looking forward to seeing live. My guess is that the USF venue is going to be packed like sardines early on for these guys.