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Album Reviews : Unleashed – As Yggdrasil Trembles

By on April 12, 2010

263570Choc full of thrashy riffs and powerful growls of victory, Swedish Viking veterans Unleashed are back with their tenth full-length album and are as strong as ever!

Almost twenty years since the release of their debut album, Unleashed are back yet again with another exceptional slab of Viking Death Metal, As Yggdrasil Trembles. Playing an extreme style of Viking Metal, Unleashed proudly sing of their fallen ancestors without compromising any bit of heaviness. Think Amon Amarth but with more thrash, and with vocals that could be compared with those of Obituary or At The Gates.

From start to finish, As Yggdrasil Trembles displays high quality catchy death/thrash guitar riffs and memorable choruses, and is consistent throughout. ‘Courage Today, Victory Tomorrow’ opens the album with a chorus that is sure to be a crowd pleaser live, then moves immediately into ‘So It Begins’, not sparing any time to the listener for a breather. Soon enough it is obvious that the whole album is non-stop and full of energy, ensuring an enjoyable listening experience.

The only downfall I can pick from the album is the occasional drop in lyrical strength. For example the track ‘Wir Kapitulieren Niemals’ sings of their genre “Viking Death Metal, Viking Death Metal”… maybe some would like it, but I think it’s stupid. Apart from a few flaws here and there, the album concept has a lot of Norse mythology themes and fits the music very well.

To be honest, I was actually pretty disappointed with this album the first couple of listens. It is nothing new for Unleashed and some could even argue they are just rehashing the same stuff over and over again. Although after a few more listens and becoming familiar with the songs you realise it’s got everything you want from an Unleashed album – Good guitar riffs, fast drumming, dirty vocals and chant-along choruses.

Fans of Amon Amarth are sure to love this album, but also fans of older thrash bands like Kreator or Sodom may even be interested in it. If you’re a long time Unleashed fan, don’t expect to hear anything different than melodic death metal the way it was supposed to be played, the way that Unleashed have always done it. 8/10

Artist: Unleashed
Album: As Yggdrasil Trembles
Year: 2010
Genre: Death Metal
Origin: Sweden
Label: Nuclear Blast/Riot! Entertainment

Track listing:
1. Courage Today, Victory Tomorrow!
2. So It Begins
3. As Yggdrasil Trembles
4. Wir Kapitulieren Niemals
5. This Time We Fight
6. Master of the Ancient Art
7. Chief Einherjar
8. Return Fire
9. Far Beyond Hell
10. Dead to Me
11. Yahweh and the Chosen Ones
12. Cannibalistic Epidemic Continues


Mitch Booth is the owner, designer and grand overlord of Metal Obsession. In the few seconds of spare time he has outside of this site, he also hosts a metal radio show over on PBS 106.7fm in Melbourne (Australia) and organises shows under the name Untitled Touring. You should follow him on Twitter.