Review: “Kingdom of Mine” EP by Blutfeld

Somethings happen at a lightning pace. Somethings happen at a glacial pace. Recorded and mixed at Goatman Studios over a two year period between 2016-2018, “Kingdom of Mine” is the sort of labour of love that a lot of bands debut EP ends up becoming. It’s a Death Metal vision that sees the duo that is Blutfeld (Daniel Tjernberg on vocals and keyboards, and Lord Flabriel handling the guitar and bass duties) joined by studio drummer Jonas Hoffman and a pair of guest vocalists. Hailing from from the darkest and dread forests of Sweden, the band are keen to make their mark.

Opening Instrumental “Fanfare” brings to mind Dueling Knights with a regal quality and loose open drumming around a Progressive Folk style riff that sets a tone by catching you off guard as it’s the last thing you’d expect – especially as the opening tune. It makes way for “Natural Born Leader” which featuring guest vocals from Samantha Kempster and sees Daniel Tjernberg provide a Blackened Death Metal growl which is in stark contrast to the clean and epic female melodic harmony. There is a classic rock inspired Progressive Metal solo that adds a moment of magic to a majestic tale. “New Dawn” has a buried synth layer that is so low in the mix it nuances out on repeated listens and only appears in the gaps between the pause break guitar, bass and drums. A song that comes at you in waves, it showcases some of the bands musicianship by keeping things taught throughout while still giving the vocals a chance to breathe. There is a hint at classic Metallica at the start of a building solo that gives the song an epic feel.

The second instrumental affair “Ritual” is a slow epic plod through the Knights Realm with Progressive Keyboards echoing flutes and a dark slow drum pattern that follows the beat of an Army walking through the wilderness. An eerie affair and a film soundscape, it continues the flow of the EP nicely with some classical touches that continue the build and sets the tone for “Victory or Defeat”. A tale of Warriors standing up to be counted and covered with some really impressive guitar solo work, it brings to mind the likes of Sabaton and their Battle Metal in terms of the lyrical content but musically coming from a much darker place. Title track “Kingdom of Mine” features the second guest vocal appearance of the EP and comes from Hada Pixie. Tjernberg uses a spoken word growl over some epic synths while Flabriel provides a sequence of classic Metal guitar parts that are surprisingly uplifting in the context of the dark vocals. There is no chugging here, this is all thin gauge riffs that have a far more technical background [7.5/10]

Tracklist

1. Fanfare (Instrumental)
2. Natural Born Leader (Ft. Samantha Kempster)
3. New Dawn
4. Ritual (Instrumental)
5. Victory or Defeat
6. Kingdom of Mine (Ft. Hada Pixie)

“Kingdom of Mine” by Blutfeld is out on 20th April and available for pre-order over at bandcamp.

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