Battle metallers forge a pact with the modern age

Why you can trust Louder Our expert reviewers spend hours testing and comparing products and services so you can choose the best for you. Find out more about how we test.

From their Viking regalia and facepaint Varg might look like staples of the battle metal genre, but over the last decade they’ve managed to dip their toes deep enough into a plethora of metal’s subgenres to concoct an interesting blend.

Das Ende Aller Lügen (‘The End Of All Lies’) is their fifth studio album and may surprise casual listeners with its nods to extreme blasting and, most shocking of all, metalcore among the European-style galloping and fist-pumping action.

When it works, you can imagine a perfect uniting of the tribes that would happen if new and old-school fans were to get together during the ludicrously bombastic Achtung, boasting everything that makes metal, from any era, such a joy.

But it doesn’t happen enough, every other song passing by with a shrug. Fair play to Varg for trying to update the sound of classic metal with the more brutal, contemporary end of our world, but consistency should be their first and foremost concern when approaching album number six.

Stephen Hill

Since blagging his way onto the Hammer team a decade ago, Stephen has written countless features and reviews for the magazine, usually specialising in punk, hardcore and 90s metal, and still holds out the faint hope of one day getting his beloved U2 into the pages of the mag. He also regularly spouts his opinions on the Metal Hammer Podcast.