Waylander
Reawakening of Pride Once Lost
[Century Media]


From Armagh come Waylander, and instead of concentrating on modern troubles, they instead focus their musics and lyrics on what was once Emain Macha - spiritual capital of ancient Ulster. What better a place for a folk metal band to descend from than Navan Fort? Some of the more cynical folks out there will pick on Waylander, claiming 'the only reason they got a record deal is because the whole thing with Cruachan and Century Media fell apart'. That may be true - who knows - the band do sound eerily like (a better produced) Cruachan quite often, but I won't bother breaking that apart.

I must admit this is an improvement from the bands earlier work, which I disliked, as it reminded me of a goofy, happy Cruachan. It's still cheesy despite the minor improvement, and not too many people can deny that.

Ah, but The fellows in Waylander are real folk musicians, and you can appreciate that when listening to their music. Folk black/thrash metal is the name of the game here, and you'll understand it if you've heard Cruachan before. The guttural, bluesy solo in 'Emain Maha', or the supremely catchy 'Victory Feast' make me smile still.

Cheesy, but OK for a listen or two. I'm surprised a band out of Derry of Portadown hasn't come out with a 'true nationalist black metal' demo though!


2000 brand