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September 2001
Released: 2001, Spikefarm Records
Rating: 4.5/5
Reviewer: Luxi Lahtinen

If we are talking about the best and most stunning debut albums of some certain bands, then I feel an urgent need to count Finland's folk-inspired metallers, Ensiferum's debut in to be a part of that pile, definitely! To be honest with you right off, I never - just never was expecting Ensiferum's debut to be THIS great. This is almost too awe-inspiring stuff to be believed at a first listen! OK, actually when I was listening to the songs like "Hero in a Dream", "Token of Time", "Old Man (Väinämöinen)", "Windrider", etc. - just any of the songs out of the album, three bands came in my mind without almost any effort: Namely first and foremost, Finntroll whose obvious influence is there; then Children of Bodom and lastly Skyclad (mainly their old albums, though). Try to imagine 3 jukeboxes side by side - one of them churning out Finntroll's JAKTENDS TID, another concentrating on playing Children of Bodom exclusively, and the 3rd one having either THE WAYWARD SONS OF MOTHER EARTH or A BURNT OFFERING FOR THE BONE IDOL bursting folk´ish noises out from the speakers at maximum volume - and you have an infernally marvelous cacophony filling the air by these 3 fine bands somewhat perfectly! Got a picture now? You did not?! Then I can only advise you to check them out 'coz they're actually THAT good and talented sons of bitches due to both a technical approach and tonz of a folk-inspired melody on their debut - just like I was bravely claiming previously.

According to a band shot on the back cover of the CD, I bet every Ensiferum - warrior is under 25-year-old; more like nearer to 20 than 25, but remember that's just a fragile shot in the dark more than anything, spit out by your poor Finland´s team member respectively. Keeping that in mind, they truly are 20-something, I'm sure you'll be hearing a lot of more from this bunch in the future... - or to be more precise, in the near future. And who knows maybe during the next couple of weeks, or maybe even next few days already?

Bet with this well-crafted, highly inspirational Viking Metal material they have got for their debut album, Ensiferum will probably get their asses out for a public eye much sooner than none of us could imagine in our most realistic guesses. My crystalball has never let me down thus far, so...
Track Listing

01. Intro
02. Hero in a Dream
03. Token of Time
04. Guardians of Fate
05. Old Man
06. Little Dreamer
07. Abandoned
08. Windrider
09. Treacherous Gods
10. Eternal Wait
11. Battle Song
12. Goblins Dance (bonus track)


Jari Mäenpää - Vocals and "One man choirs", rhythm guitars and solos, acoustics and 12-string.
Markus Toivonen - The mighty folkmelody guitars, acoustics and drunken gobblin´s beer bottle percussions
Jukka-Pekka Miettinen - Bass
Oliver Fokin - Drums and percussions.

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