Band Name: Frosttide
Title: Blood Oath
Date of Release: 2015
Record Label: Noiseart Records
Genre: Folk Metal
Album Review Format: Youtube stream
Reviewed by: Geoff McGraw
Track listings: 1. Prologue 2. Blood Oath 3. Gates Of The Asylum 4. Fate Redefined 5. Traitor Within 6. Foreshadow 7. New Reign 8. Winds Of Winter's Call 9. Apache 10. One Night In Bangkok
Frosttide, if you have yet to hear of them, hails from the cold lands of Finland and in 2011 received their homeland vote of confidence when they received an award for the 2011's best underground act. in 2013 the band dropped their debut full length. It is important to mention the 1st album because Blood Oath is sort of a prequel/companion piece to the original release. Although you can listen to this album without knowledge of the previous effort, certainly having it will add to the experience.
These Finnish Musicians definitely pay homage to bands like Wintersun, and Ensiferum as well as balancing their songs between melody and aggression. They certainly could have gone in a power metal direction with different vocals. Folk metal has it's detractors because, like power metal, is often viewed as indulgent and over orchestrated. If you are not of this mindset however you will find their instrumentation to be grand, providing plenty of atmosphere and bombast. Guitars are melodic, and the music shifts between tempos in a well timed manner. I am disappointed that in the mixing of this album vocalist Joni Snoro seems to have been pushed into the background somewhat. As the album progresses you begin to notice that his vocals are not as powerful as you would expect, the instruments seem to overwhelm him rather than working in tandem as the previous release.
Still all in all I have to say that Frosttide has produced and album that stands well on it's own, even if maybe a half step back from their initial release, it's still a very good entry into the folk metal genre.
7 of 10 horns.