Ensiferum - From Afar LP (black vinyl)
Gatefold-LP on 140 standard gram.
Ensiferum’s “From Afar” is undoubtedly a new highlight in their discography.
It managed to give the band a new identity after the years of important line-up changes.
This is both epic and good !
Truly excellent albums differ from ones that merely entertain to great degrees in that they often redefine one’s premises about what defines excellence.
This tends to manifest in many different ways, sometimes merely by not conforming to one’s expectations.
The predetermined bias that I carried when first approaching Ensiferum’s “From Afar” is that it would be comparable to “Victory Songs”, primarily in that it would be a solid listen that falls short in a few areas to past accomplishments.
But not long after getting through the first couple of songs I began to realize that what I was hearing was something that was well beyond said caliber of an album.
If nothing else, Markus and company have proven that Ensiferum can live on and thrive even after losing almost all of its original lineup.
The songs are still fresh, in spite of being beholden to a very limiting and simplistic style that hasn‘t been altered much in the past 10 years.
For fans of: Children of Bodom, Amon Amarth, Wintersun, Equilibrium, Finntroll