Crimfall - Amain album review

Ambitious five-piece attempt to break the Finnish folk metal mould

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It can’t be easy being a folk metal band in Finland when folk and battle metal is as common as a chilly morning, but Crimfall have delved into the recipe book and come up with “cinematic folk metal”. Imagine an album crammed with epic choirs, a lung-busting female vocalist, a gruff sidekick, a few fiddles and rolling thunder. There isn’t a lot to warrant the ‘cinematic’ tag except for the odd stylistic twist during The Last Of Stands where it goes a bit Star Wars-y, but Amain is very epic. The four-part Ten Winters Apart is the centrepiece; forgive the cheesy spoken intro – this 15-minute opus soon evolves into an outpouring of Helena Haaparanta’s operatic vocals while Mother Of Unbelievers mashes thrash and Eastern vibes to good effect. A bit of the less-obvious stuff and Crimfall will do well.