ALBUM REVIEW: Elvenking – Reader Of The Runes – Rapture

ELVENKING are back with a brand-new tale that will take the listener on a great journey. ELVENKING have been on my radar for the past few years now and have been a casual listener of theirs. They have an intriguing sound that gets the balance of complex and simple just right. Their upcoming tale Reader Of The Runes – Rapture displays some of the best examples of what I mean by this.

Rapture was the first single released to promote this latest escapade and I would describe this as the perfect album opener; entices you right in before hitting you with a giant impact. What attracted me to this track when it was released as a single were the darker undertones that ELVENKING take on whilst sticking to their signature sound.

Speaking of darker undertones, these carry on throughout the album. When changing direction of the sound, it can also be difficult to keep to the core, signature sound that drew the fans in to begin with. ELVENKING pull this off incredibly well and give us a great variety of tracks.

Necks will be sore and legs will ache at the sounds of Herdchant as I anticipate there will be a lot of headbanging and foot stomping going on when this track plays. What is brilliant about this track is the amount of variety it offers, that can be anything from pumping riffs to the delicate folk sounds. To gain the full enjoyment of this track, close your eyes and simply lose yourselves into the diverse sounds this track offers.

Wish to hear Power and Folk Metal at it’s finest? To The North is the track for you. This is due to the track’s infectious beat and melody it possesses; in fact, the track is that infectious that’s it’s impossible to focus on anything else when this track plays. It’s one those tracks that needs to played loud and one to enjoy with your fellow warriors.

Incantations bring a battle between two wizards to mind. This is due to the majestic orchestrations and grand melody this track plays. It’s important to stay on your toes during this track as you don’t know what it coming around the corner. It was great to hear a call back to the track Divination from their previous tale, providing that link between the albums.

Long time fans of the band needn’t fear as there are familiar sounding tracks that brought warriors to the clan in the first instance. For example, Red Mist is a track that wouldn’t be out of place in the eighties whilst containing the signature ELVENKING sound. Other examples of typical ELVENKING tracks include the bold sounds in The Cursed Cavilier and the air violinist’s dream track The Autumn Reverie.

It closes triumphantly on the song The Repentant; it gives one last blast of the band’s perfect balance between the darker tones and their signature sound. It’s important to keep on your toes when this track plays.

This is the first full ELVENKING album I have sat down and experienced; it certainly won’t be the last. It’s a journey of twists and turns that will please long-time fans and new listeners alike.

Rating: 8/10

Words: Lotty Whittingham

Reader Of The Runes – Rapture will be released 28th April 2023 via AFM Records.

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