Solefald has always been a band unafraid of doing their own thing, and their brand new album World Metal. Kosmopolis Sud is another engaging offering from the outfit; an adventurous piece that truly is a rewarding listen. Following on strongly from their last release, their EP entitled Norrønasongen. Kosmopolis Nord, Solefald are really onto a winner with this album. We decided to go a bit more in-depth with this album and give an insight into the entire release, track by track.
World Music with Black Edges
A striking way to get things going, it begins with a catchy little keyboard riff that quickly evolves into a full idea when the vocals kick in and the clean vocals being juxtaposed against the harsh vocals is a great touch. One of the best things about this song in particular is the vast amount of styles brought into the mix – it’s got a definite avant-garde feel to it, with other genres brought in such as post-rock, prog and metal, and even a bit of electronic for good measure! It’s impossible to earmark this song into being one particular style but honestly, do you even need to? In any case, World Music With Black Edges is the perfect opening to the album and really sets the scene well for the songs to come.
The Germanic Entity
You certainly can’t say the introduction isn’t a bit of an earworm! It has a bit of a marimba-style effect and it swiftly gets stuck into your head, which is no-doubt helped by the idea constantly appearing and reappearing within the song at parts, both as a lead instrument and in the background. As with World Music With Black Edges, there’s a lot going on within this song and it’s absolutely one of those songs you can listen to time and time again, yet still pick something different out every time.
Bububu Bad Beuys
This is more of a traditionally guitar-driven track, featuring some of the most unique vocal performances on the entire offering, ranging from chanted “bububu”s (there is a lot of these!) to half-bellowed sections, growled parts and smoothly wailed sections at times. At times it is more of a difficult song to get into, compared to some of the others, but it’s definitely worth sticking with because it is a rewarding one.
Future Universal Histories
Future Universal Histories is one of the heavier tracks on the album, featuring fuzzy-sounding guitars and a big chunky drum line. However, despite this, the vocals never quite venture into harsh territory – and this works well because it’s a good example of how Solefald isn’t afraid of going against the ‘norm’. Also I challenge you to listen to this song and not want to sing along to it – it just has one of those memorable vocal lines that gets stuck in your head, especially the more times you listen to it.
This song has a bit of a The Germanic Entity vibe to it at first, no-doubt aided by the similar sounding introduction, but it comes into its own when the electric instruments and harsh vocals kick in. There’s a bit more of a rough-and-ready feel to this track in particular and it has a real punch to it – the relentlessly hammering drums during the heavier parts are absolutely incredible and the energy is off the wall in parts. This is absolutely a song that would go down a treat in a live environment.
2011, or a Knight of the Fail
Beginning with vocals right from the get-go, it’s a great way to make an introduction and grabs your interest almost immediately – and then holds it when things suddenly get a bit more stripped back. The deep spoken vocals atop of atmospheric keys are really something, giving the track an almost haunting tone, and when the spine-tinglingly good guitar joins in for good measure, it adds so much to the track despite its simplicity. The track then verges into doomy territory as it continues to progress, no-doubt aided by the stunning vocal performance and slow-paced drum beats, and then takes another electronic-driven/indie route before things get a little more chaotic (in the best possible sense!) to close. Absolutely stunning stuff, and one of the highlights of the album.
String The Bow Of Sorrow
This is another of the more adventurous songs on World Metal. Kosmopolis Sud and sounds so big that it wouldn’t sound out of place being performed on a humongous stage inside a stadium! Epic is a word that perhaps does this track justice; with big vocal sections and striking instrumentation during the more energetic parts, and atmospheric tones during the more chilled sections, and is another one of those songs that features lines that are simply begging to be sung along to.
Oslo Melancholy is the closing track of the album and is a fitting end to World Metal. Kosmopolis Sud . It’s the slowest and most stripped-back track, and serves to round things up rather nicely. The deep spoken vocals and soft clean vocals atop of the fairly simplistic instrumentation all works very well as a sort-of summary for the album, and brings things to a very satisfying close.
Overall, World Metal. Kosmopolis Sud is an excellent listen, and an album you’ll keep wanting to come back to – this is a memorable release for all the right reasons.
Check out our interview with Cornelius from last year here.