Article by: Brian Halsey ‡ Edited by: Leanne Ridgeway
In Iceland, a majority of the native people believe in elves, the only war ever waged was over codfish, and their city’s capital (Reykjavik) has an entire museum dedicated to dicks. Yup. Just a big fancy building filled with a bunch of different dicks from the wild.
Black metal thrives in awesome places that have lots of snow and volcanic activity… and dick museums. Misþyrming (or Misthyrming in ‘Murica style letters) have proved that in monstrous fashion on 2019’s ‘Algleymi.’
Misþyrming’s second album sheds more than a touch of the depressive and dissonant sound from their debut, ‘Söngvar elds og óreiðu‘ (Songs Of Fire and Chaos’), and replaces it with glorious musicianship that is concurrently haunting and triumphant. Crushing riffs, black n roll, straight-up headbanger grooves, all while never losing the vibe of what is unimpeachably a black metal album.
“Orgia” is a mammoth opener that batters your senses, while allowing an epic symphony to lurk below the surface of chaos. When the first song rips that hard, it kind of sets the tone for the entire album. “Med Svipur a Lofti” is another standout track, but due to the creative pacing and unique structure of the songs, ‘Algleymi‘ is easily digestible in its entirety.
“Ísland, Steingelda Krummaskuð” is a total rager and “Hælið” is a marching instrumental that will have you climbing glaciers and getting dangerously close to pools of lava hoping to crush a few extra likes on your Instagram feed. At some point, even very good albums from this genre tend to plod on a bit, but that is never the case here, 47 minutes of extreme heaviness rumble along at full power.
For any photography nerds looking for something that blends an enchanting Icelandic atmosphere with a black metal aesthetic, check out Svartmalur (it features Misþyrming, in addition to other prominent bands from the area). The work is from photographer Verði ljós, the alter-ego of Wormlust’s Hafsteinn Viðar Ársælsson.
But keep your priorities in check and pick up ‘Algleymi‘ first. It’s running away with the black metal album of the year at this point. Selfishly, I need this band to become more popular, so they can get hooked up with an American merch deal. Euros + Icelandic shipping prices = like a $65 hoodie. FJANDINN!
02. Með Svipur á Lofti
03. Ísland, Steingelda Krummaskuð
05. Og er Haustið Líður Undir Lok
06. Allt Sem Eitt Sinn Blómstraði
I will leave you with one of my favorite quotes of all time, from the island nation’s original Viking strongman, Jón Páll Sigmarsson, “There’s no reason to be alive if you can’t do a deadlift.”
Sadly, the beloved pump dragon suffered a massive heart attack while deadlifting on a berserker’s ration of anabolic steroids, but I can guarantee you that dude is rocking Misþyrming in Valhalla. I recommend you do the same. Order the album from Bandcamp.
– Misþyrming Tour Dates 2020 –