Vildhjarta: Thousands of Evils EP

Vildhjarta have done it again. They are out with yet another deliciously heavy and wonderfully ominous record, the Thousands of Evils EP.

tumblr_inline_mxs3yfaQ7M1sr75clThe Swedish artists play a style of progressive metal which is a combination of heavy, off time riffs, dark and foreboding ambiance and dual lead vocals with occasional clean singing. Their music throws you off. Their songs are a roller coaster ride. And yet, with such a unique sound they aren’t afraid to experiment and push their craft further and this EP is a fine example of this aspect of theirs.

The EP is similar to their last LP Måsstaden, but different at the same time. This time around the riffs sound heavier and catchier. It seems like guitarists Daniel Bergström and Calle Thomér have fine tuned their art and have succeeded in making the listener hang on to every note they play. From a strictly guitar point of view, the riffs are more cohesive, the grooves are ‘easier’ to feel and even the off key notes that they love playing ‘fit’ better which according to me lacked in Måsstaden. I feel this is intentional and a clear sign of their songwriting prowess. There are a lot of sudden changes in feel and groove which confuse you all the while keeping that cymbal pounding in 4/4, which basically is the Vildhjarta sound we’ve come to love. The guitar tone has become less metallic-sounding than it was on their previous album but I don’t mind it at all. Talking about the atmospheres used on this record, they’ve taken a step further and added orchestral elements this time. The first song ‘Introduction: Staos’ begins with a film score-sounding part which goes suddenly into a heavy off time rhythm section. Another brilliant and new element they’ve introduced is acoustic guitar! The song ‘Dimman’ is almost 3 minutes of bass-heavy acoustic guitar and the rest is tasty low-end heavy guitar.

The vocals also have improved on this record. The combination of highs and lows by vocalists Daniel Ädel and Vilhelm Bladin fit the sound of the band well. There are clean parts in some sections; the most prominent one being in the last song ‘Mist förståndet’ which has spoken words in sync with the rest of the instruments which creates a really heavy and intense section. I expected them to use more clean vocals this time because it definitely complements their sound well. If you’ve heard their Omnislash EP, you know what I’m talking about. I wish they bring that element back in their next release.

One thing I noticed right off the bat was the length of the songs. They are shorter, the longest song being 4:07 minutes long. This is very unlike their LP which had 6 to 7 minute songs. The songs flow well together and there is never a dull moment, which again, I felt lacked in Måsstaden. It is quite evident that they focused more on their song structures.

All in all, we love the new direction they have taken. Vildhjarta have showed us they aren’t one trick ponies and are here to stay.

8eight8music gives this EP a thall/10.

– Quiet Boi

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