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Stormrider
First Battle Won
September 2004
Released: 2004, New Aeon Media/Sound Pollution
Rating: 3.7/5
Reviewer: Anders Sandvall

Stormrider formed in 1999 out of Stockholm, Sweden. Very early in 1999 they released their first demo BORN OF CHAOS and later that summer they followed up with the GOD IS DEAD demo. After some silence on the recording front, the band released the demo INTO BATTLE in late 2002. Those releases built a strong name and reputation for the band in the European underground and they landed a deal with Destructive Records.



In early 2003 Stormrider entered the infamous Abyss Studios to record their debut album, FIRST BATTLE WON. Unfortunately the label couldn’t deliver what they promised, so the band ended up with a strong debut album and no label to release it. In order to find a company to release their album they sent out copies to different labels and finally New Aeon Media (a sub-label to Karmageddon Media) saw the band’s potential and signed them immediately. The label also added a bonus track and a video as an extra bonus to the original album. The very famous Tommy Tägtgren (The Forsaken, Dark Funeral, Marduk) produced FIRST BATTLE WON. As always, Tägtgren has done a brilliant job with both the production and mixing of the album.



Stormrider delivers twelve tracks, including the bonus track. The music was written by the entire band with lyrics handled by vocalist YX. As to be expected with black metal, the lyrics are about death, anxiety, destroying god and killing yourself. However, the band doesn’t play pure black metal. They’re really a mixture of death metal and melodic black metal. There are a lot of places in the songs where the tempo changes. When it comes to the vocals its straight black metal throughout the album. This variation in the songs is something you don’t usually find in black/death metal songs.



FIRST BATTLE WON is an extremely strong and impressive debut. The music is well played, creating a stunning soundscape, and the songs are varied. YX is an excellent singer. On the negative side we have the partly miserable lyrics that leave nothing to the imagination and the eminently boring album cover. But besides those things this is an astounding debut. I can’t pick any favorite song out of them because they are all on the same high level. Stormrider have the potential to go really far and I’m sure we’re going to hear more from them soon.



http://www.soundpollution.se
Track Listing

1. Into Battle
2. The Other Side
3. Completely Dead (F.T.W)
4. Killer
5. God Is Dead
6. Odin’s Ride
7. Kill Yourself (In The Name Of Christ)
8. The Beast
9. Addiction
10. Dead Love Of Mine, Part 1
11. Dead Love Of Mine, Part 2
12. Burning The Heavens (bonus track)

Lineup

YX – lead vocals
Mikael “Strampan” Strandberg – guitar
Henrik Larsén – guitar
Morgan Ramstedt – bass
Kristoffer Ahlberg – drums

Other reviews

» First Battle Won
by Anders Sandvall

» First Battle Won
by JP

» Fate of the Hunter
by Luxi Lahtinen

» The Path Of Salvation
by JP


Next review: » Stormrider - First Battle Won
Previous review: » Stormrider - Fate of the Hunter

Stormrider
First Battle Won
December 2004
Released: 2004, Karmageddon
Rating: 3.5/5
Reviewer: JP

Year-end wrap-up: Each of the last few years to wrap up the year I have picked a theme for my reviews for December. This year due to the overwhelming number of CD’s that deserve exposure, recognition and commentary I am going to resort to quantity over quality. I usually try to give as much attention to each CD with extensive commentary however this month’s reviews (perhaps unfortunately) will be short and sweet and much more in the style of traditional magazine reviews where space restrictions are an important factor. (ie. Less detail) I apologize in advance to readers who expect much more detailed reviews. Please check the reviews archives as many of my colleagues have written excellent detailed commentary of many of these CD’s. I hope the large number of quick comments will help guide you making some of those important year-end CD purchase decisions. Happy Holidays and see you in January. JP



Pretty damn, mean blast of hate on this CD! Stormrider are a side-project of sorts unleashing a short 11 track CD of hate-filled blackened death. The lyrics are great traditional lyrics about drinking and killing and other delightful topics of rage. The songs are all fast and perhaps unfortunately not enough variation in the structure and arrangements, so the short length works in the bands favour. Karmageddon does an adequate job but the band name could be better and the cover, design and layout are dark and visually uninteresting. The production is killer and the vocals of XY are a nice mix of higher pitched tortured screams and gurgling death growls. His voice makes the band. Stormrider have indeed won the first battle.
Track Listing

1. Into Battle
2. The Other Side
3. Completely Dead (F.T.W.)
4. Killer
5. God Is Dead
6. Odin’s Ride
7. Kill Yourself (In The Name Of Christ)
8. The Beast
9. Addiction
10. Dead Love Of Mine Part I
11. Dead Love Of Mine Part II
12. Burning The Heavens (bonus)
13. Completely Dead (video)

Lineup

XY-Vocals
Strampan-Guitar
Henrik Larsen-Guitar
Morgan Ramstedt-Bass
Kristoffer Ahlberg-Drums

Contact

N/A

Other reviews

» First Battle Won
by Anders Sandvall

» First Battle Won
by JP

» Fate of the Hunter
by Luxi Lahtinen

» The Path Of Salvation
by JP


Next review: » StormRider - The Path Of Salvation
Previous review: » Stormrider - Fate of the Hunter





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