Vanhelga – Fredagsmys album review

Temperamental Swedish black metallers Vanhelga lose sight of the plot with Fredagsmys

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Vanhelga – Fredagsmys

1. Sömnparalys
2. Psykotisk självinsikt
3. Varde mörker
4. Ensam mot alla
5. Förpassad till misär
6. Två blir ett
7. Keep the Window Closed
8. RIP (Relationship in Pieces)
9. Feels like Breathing in Sulfur
10. You Are Temporary
11. Fredagsmys

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Some bands can get away with experimenting a little or changing things up, but black metallers Vanhelga live dangerously close to chaos. Fredagsmys starts off well with Sömnparalys charging out of the gate and vocalist 145188 spitting bile over churning guitars, but following track Psykotisk Självinsikt changes everything. 

Weirdly strummed guitars channel an almost acoustic feel but it’s the out-of- place whistling and clean singing that jars the mind. Vanhelga seem like the kind of band that thrive on such discordant clashes and they swing from the furious, fast-paced and raw black metal of Förpassad Till Misär – and its gorgeous guitar solo – to bizarre folk-leaning odes like Ensam Mot Alla with no warning. 

As an exercise in exploring the different sides of one personality Fredagsmys works very well, but otherwise the listening experience falls flat.