Album Review: Borknagar – True North (Century Media Records/Sony Music)

The upcoming album by Norway’s avant-garde Metallers Borknagar, entitled “True North”, will be released by Century Media Records/Sony Music on September 27th, 2019.

Borknagar founder and guitarist Øystein G. Brun comments:

This has indeed been a thunderous ride, and we are truly excited to finally start revealing some news about our upcoming album. We have spent almost 2 years writing, recording and producing ”True North” and we are extremely proud of what we have achieved this time around. On behalf of the whole band, I can firmly say that we have pushed the limits of our musical exploration, while our musical roots have grown even deeper into the northern ground. This is the most diverse, powerful and grandiose Borknagar album to date! Let there be no doubt!

A powerful opener, Thunderous is an apt name as it comes ‘thundering’ out with all the force of an angry storm. The savagery of the riffs and black metal style vocals consumes while the lighter, more melodic moments lifts and showcases peacefulness.

It’s an excellent start. However, that’s the important word…start. Borknagar are just getting started.

Up North is a hell of a unique effort, a twisting effort that puts the soaring clean vocals front and centre. The Fire That Burns is utterly humongous with its black metal edge but with so much of the ‘epic’ about it, it’s simply staggering. Lights then delivers an enlightening, if not darker…less hopeful, sounding number.

The effort by Borknagar to deliver a world-conquering effort here is admirable, this is an album that by no means phones it in. Instead the avant-garde metallers throw all their passion into an album that is dripping in glorious powerful heaviness, sadness-inducing melodies and everything in between. The former is the driving force behind the emotive Wild Father’s Heart while the latter pushes Mount Rapture and Into the White’s thumping head-bangers to the front to be counted.

Tidal, the longest track on the album, sees Borknagar show just how heavy they can go. While also retaining the sense of wonder that comes with all their music. It’s larger then life, a track designed to be played loudly from atop a mountain.

The epic Truth North then wraps up with the memorable melody-driven finale of Voices. The increasing tempo and gargantuan vocal performance putting the final stamp on an incredible album.

Borknagar – True North Full Track Listing:

1. Thunderous
2. Up North
3. The Fire That Burns
4. Lights
5. Wild Father’s Heart
6. Mount Rapture
7. Into the White
8. Tidal
9. Voices


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Borknagar - True North (Century Media Records/Sony Music)
  • The Final Score - 9/10
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