Friday, 13 August 2010

BROTHERHOOD


Band: HUGIN
Title: Brotherhood
Format: Cassette release on Wulfrune Worxx (France), part of their 'Split Series' and a joint release with Hrossharsgrani (whose "Of Battles, Ravens and Fire" release is on the reverse side). 2010 release, catalogue reference WW109.
Edition: Hand-numbered edition of 66 copies

Track Listing:

01. Intro - The Windlords [from "Land of Frost" by Nachtfalke]
02. Venus Rising [from "Reign of the Fallen One" by Dark Domination]
03. Angel Enthroned [from "Reign of the Fallen One" by Dark Domination]
04. Introduction [from "Ancient Runic Sorcery" of Forgotten Land]
05. Outro [from "A Nordic Poem" by Folkearth]
06. Introduction [from "By the Sword of my Father" by Folkearth]
07. Journey Ends [from "By the Sword of my Father" by Folkearth]

Here's a cracking wheeze - take Hugin's various contributions to other projects done in his own name (as opposed to being release from one of his formal projects on a split album or compilation) and bring them together in one place under the 'Hugin' project. No longer do you need to scour the seven kingdoms to unearth the last remaining copy of the legendary "Ancient Runic Sorcery" album from Forgotten Land, nor expend oodles of cash on various Folkearth and Nachtfalke releases.

This can't be called the the definitive collection of extra curricular work from Hugin, however, as for one thing it doesn't include the 'Ravens Empire' introduction for Hugin Munin (Viking warriors of Brazil) amongst it tracks, or indeed the instrumental tracks 'Set Sails Onward To Plunder', 'Odin's Blackwinged Messengers' or 'By The Power Of Mjolnir' from the "Viking Brothers" release, but what is on offer shows plenty of variety and having most of it in one place can only be a good thing for casual fans and collectors alike.

By dint of the fact that this material tends to book-end most other artists albums, either as intro or outro pieces, it should come as no surprise to learn that these are short instrumental pieces, and heavily keyboard driven. It should also comes as no surprise given that the songs in question have been covered on their respective original releases on Honour and Darkness, and Nazgul is proud to have had a part in helping with this release in as far as providing the MP3 file for 'Introduction' from his copy of the "Ancient Runic Sorcery" release, a 2006 demo so obscure that even Hugin himself couldn't lay hands on the original track!

The only track here that has not been covered previously is the opener, the introduction from Nachtfalke's epic 2003 album "Land of Frost". Here, a brief introduction of - you guessed it - wind-based ambient effects is the prelude to some rigourous riffing and throaty vocals from the German horde.

The title for this collection is rather fitting too - "Brotherhood". Defined as 'an association of men, such as a fraternity or union, united for common purposes', which (if the ladies reading will allow Nazgul this indiscretion) probably nicely sums up the majority of readers of these pages. The subtle irony of the cover illustration, which portrays armed female warriors in winged helmets, can't surely be coincidence....

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